As world leaders gather in New York for the 74th United Nations General Assembly, many made the trek down the street for the 2019 Concordia Summit, where they joined philanthropists, CEOs, and thought leaders from around the world. Amid talk of the Sustainable Development Goals and mounting global crises, USGLC’s President and CEO Liz Schrayer was there to moderate the panel “Building Economic Prosperity by Creating Shared Value.” How can a business tackle global problems and address the SDGs, while also creating value for its shareholders? In other words, how can a company do good while doing well?
In case you missed the discussion, here are what two top executives had to say:
“A company that doesn’t bring value to society shouldn’t exist… [Our] corporate strategy, as you say, is built around the global megatrends of climate change, urbanization, aging demographics around the world, the global supply chain, and overarching all of that, digitalization. And what we get to do is bring our know how in electrification, automation, and digitalization to solve those big hard problems that others simply can’t address.”
– Barbara Humpton, CEO of Siemens US
“We are going to invent great things for patients, and the profits will follow… I will say we’re starting to see more and more that shareholders and investors really expect that. [they] are saying ‘Listen, we need you to pull this through—environmental, social and governance issues are expected.’”
– Carmen Villar, Vice President, Social Business Innovation, Merck