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The Responsible Business: Reimagining Sustainability and Success Hardcover – March 29, 2011


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Jossey-Bass; 1 edition (March 29, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0470648686
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470648681
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1.2 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #278,648 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

A deeper, more satisfying look at business from the inside by a seasoned management consultant bullfax.com

From the Inside Flap

"When most people think of corporate responsibility, they are focusing on a business's effect on and relationship to stakeholders. A Responsible Business sees stakeholders as full partners and meaningful instruments for the evolution of healthier communities and more successful businesses."
from the Introduction

The Responsible Business offers a new and strategic approach to doing business that holistically integrates responsibility into all aspects of an organization, allowing for returns at every level, business and social. This book goes beyond the often well intentioned but limited attempts at sustainability to present a framework that allows organizations to bring responsibility into everything they do and re-imagine success. From innovation, product development, and production processes to business management, strategic planning, and shareholder development, the author shows how being a Responsible Business is a practical skill that can be applied day-to-day at every level of the business.

No longer just the role of a department or the job of CSR professionals, successful responsibility and business efforts start at the business level, are then taken to the corporate level, and are finally applied throughout the organization. The Responsible Business outlines a framework for building a responsibility and consciousness infrastructure that applies a living systems view to the business and inspires all of its stakeholders, including shareholders.

Throughout the book, illustrated by examples from technology to manufacturing, large and small, public and private, Sanford demonstrates how to make responsibility integral to all aspects of a business as an engine for innovation, profitability, and purpose.


More About the Author

Carol Sanford believes that we all want to create a better world, and that business can and will play a major role in accomplishing that. "It will be more than just a responsibility program," she says. "Responsibility will be HOW everything is done, in the DNA so to speak, of the business and everyone will participate to make a real difference." Working the way she lays out in her books can, and has, changed the course of history. The books of filled with case stories, many of women, who have done just that.

To that end, Carol has been leading major consulting change efforts in both Fortune 500 and new-economy businesses for more than 35 years. Her client list includes long-term relationships with Colgate Europe and Africa and DuPont Canada, US, Asia and Europe. She also works with new-economy companies like Intel, Agilent and leaders of corporate responsibility such as Seventh Generation.Google uses her Responsible Business framework in an Innovation Lab.

Carol is CEO of Carol Sanford Institute, a consultative education company on building Regenerative Businesses that become non-displaceable in their markets, enduringly. The Carol Sanford Institute is based in the Seattle region of the Puget Sound.

She combines her economic development experience with her extensive business education and background using consultative education and learning practices.

Carol has published dozens of works in 10 languages, including a series of articles in Executive Excellence, Stephen Covey's newsletter and At Work, a Berrett-Koehler Journal. She is the author of The Responsible Business: Reimagining Sustainability and Success (March 2011), Jossey-Bass, Publisher.

Central to Carol's philosophy and approach is a fresh look at what makes an organization truly responsible. "It's important to discovery your singularity, what enables you to differentiate your business from the crowd," she says, "and then thinking about how to do business so that communities, societies, and ecology as a whole are improved. These are not separate but interwoven pursuits. It's completely doable, and a conversation worth having."

She holds undergraduate degrees from UC Berkeley in Economics and Public Law and graduate degree from California State University, San Jose in Urban Planning. She currently lives in Seattle.

Customer Reviews

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I highly recommend reading the book then calling Carol.
Gregor Barnum
The Responsible Business is interesting both to those interested in business as well as those interested in the health of our communities and our planet.
Seedybeans
This book offers a "road map" of how a business can "be the change you want to see in the world" - and that this path can be enormously rewarding.
Kathleen Turpel

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Thomas Sprimont on March 30, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book goes beyond anything available today on structuring companies for success. This is not just a theoretical treatise, but addresses case studies and implementation methods.

In today's highly dynamic business environments, executives struggle to create value across an array of stakeholders; customers, employees, shareholders, and so forth. The model Sanford defines identifies not only the traditional actors, but those that are traditionally excluded from business planning, such as sustainability partners.

In an unlikely, but entirely predictable scenario, people become center stage as they work to their potential under a new structural paradigm. By engaging the business in both an inward and outward vision, complete relevance is created ensuring products and services are developed in a sustainable construct.

As businesses continue to try new theories and implement cumbersome disconnected "best practices," Sanford provides a very useful package for any size business. In fact, examples from Fortune 500 to startups give credence to her well thought out approach.

This book is for anyone from management theory aficionados, to executive leaders, to people who want to realize their own potential. Going beyond business, many of the precepts within this work can be applied to anyone who values human potential in any environment.
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By John H. Wood on March 28, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition
This is a rare business book that is both readable and profound. It will give voice to your latent thoughts and feelings which will make change easier. If you can get beyond yourself and the stories in the book, you will discover concepts that will enable you to develop new found potential in your organization. Further, if you can get past pervasive, long held business practices, you will have insights that will make transformation possible.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Lynn on March 31, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Sometimes a person comes along who has such a fundamental understanding of how the world works that their writing is transferable to many different fields of endeavor. Carol Sanford is such a writer.

This book is a must-read for every person wishing to lead a company... or leading anything of importance... leading an important life.

The book could be thought of as a metaphor: Every parent will gain insight into developing the being of a child into a successful adult. Every educator will see their task in developing students who can responsibly build a family, business, community, and nation. Every individual is introduced to a way of thinking about their role, such that they are both financially successful, but also fulfilled by seeing their contribution to other's well being.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By C. Vandemore on April 4, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is an amazing book for business people and if enough of us read it this will be an amazing time for business. Carol Sanford reminds us that business is not just a way people make money - it one of the primary activities our whole species does here on earth and we have the potential for it to be so much more effective, meaningful, interesting and fun than it is now.

I am not sure how we have backed ourselves into a corner, volunteering to feel helpless and limited. But I am sure what Carol Sanford says makes beautiful and obvious sense. If we want to improve lives and the health of the planet business can do that (in fact good business always has) but it will NOT be as a side project that doesn't involve the whole of the business. We need original thinking, a little courage and some faith in each other.

Just pointing this out would be enough for one book, but this book contains an explicit "how to" and many illustrative case studies. I can't wait to put this into practice.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Danielle Lanyard on April 22, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Having been involved in the sustainability movement for a few decades now, I've read everything from Buckminster Fuller to Paul Hawken, and all the academic texts in between. Therefore, I can state with certitude that The Responsible Business Leader is not just another green book or earthy title for the treehugger among us. This is a book that transcends industries, the 'isms, the niches of the sustainability movement and the fluff that sometimes muddies the dire reality of the state of our environment and economy. The author clearly speaks from a place that is as passionate as it is pragmatic, and provides concrete examples, profound wisdom, and principled practicality that results in what is in my opinion the manifesto for the new economy. These results equate to a book that is as timely as it is moving, as detailed and specific as it is grandiose and visionary, and as relevant as any title that address the needs of today's business person and layman regarding what the next generation of business should and could look like.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Seedybeans on April 23, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I found the ideas clearly addressed, even though complex. The stories that illustrate the concepts are very helpful and inspiring. I have already put the framework in this book to work with a school in CT. The biggest proof of the value of this book is how effective the sessions and the resulting work was when focused through the lens of the Pentad. Thank You Carol! The Responsible Business is interesting both to those interested in business as well as those interested in the health of our communities and our planet.
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