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Yes, a stakeholder-focused approach exists today

Erica Salmon Byrne (erica.salmonbyrne@ethisphere.com) is the Executive Vice President of The Ethisphere Institute.

In August, the Business Roundtable issued a statement redefining the purpose of corporations to deliver value to customers, invest in employees, deal fairly with suppliers, support communities, and generate long-term value for shareholders.

The Business Roundtable’s shift in stance was met with a range of reactions—from millennials applauding the move, to others suggesting it is all talk. Although I understand why there would be skepticism, I believe that many companies are ahead of the game and already working to serve all stakeholders. They exemplify the way that corporate leaders can and do think today about how their company can work to serve a broader societal purpose, support communities, take care of customers, and empower employees.

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