Next global ambassador--the CEO

I was reading this WSJ article (The CEO as global corporate ambassador, March 29, 2006, Page A2) this morning and it talked about a CEO should not just focus on the best interests of the shareholders, but also the best interests of the stakeholders,(which mean everybody from the employees, suppliers, communities etc.)

In our finance class, we learned that if you run a corporation, your goal is to increase the wealth of the shareholders.
True, but maybe this is not the whole picture yet.
According to the article, the CEO of Procter & Gamble, A.G. Leftley took up bigger responsiblity as a global citizen when making decisions for the company.

This is his view on social responsibility of a global corporation:

"Mr. Lafley agrees that P&G's first job is to make money. Under his leadership, the company has done a good job of that. "If we aren't successful," he says, "we don't have a right to do the other stuff."

But as he sees it, today's world requires him to take on a broader mission, partly to ensure his company's continued success and profitability.

"Like it or not, we are in a global economy and a global political world," he says. "Honest to god, the responsibility is huge." "

I particularly like the quote, "If we aren't successful, we don't have a right to do the other stuff."

Yes, as an actuary, may be we are in the business (consulting or insurance, doesn't matter) because we want to make money. However, we also want to keep a bigger perspective on making the world a better place.

I know you need WSJ subscription to read the whole article. If you are interested, send me an email and I can email you a copy of this article.