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Values-Driven Business: How to Change the World, Make Money, and Have Fun (Social Venture Network Series) Paperback – March 22, 2006

4.3 out of 5 stars 14 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"In Values-Driven Business, the authors show how any company, no matter how small, can do well by doing good." -- Russ Feingold, U.S. Senator

"Invaluable reading for those starting or running a small- to mid-sized business — and for entrepreneurial students in business schools." -- Prof. Kellie A. McElhaney, Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley

About the Author

Ben Cohen is one of the co-founders of Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream, president of business leaders for sensible priorities and a founding member of the Social Venture Network. He is the coauthor of Ben & Jerry's Double Dip: How to Run a Values-Led Business and Make Money Too. Mal Warwick is chair of the Social Venture Network Advisory Board and is the cofounder of Mal Warwick and Associates, a fund raising and direct marketing agency that has serves non-profit organisations.
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Product Details

  • Series: Social Venture Network Series
  • Paperback: 156 pages
  • Publisher: Berrett-Koehler Publishers (March 22, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1576753581
  • ISBN-13: 978-1576753583
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,116,277 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Harvey McKinnon on April 11, 2006
Format: Paperback
This is a book aimed at the hundreds of thousands of small businesses that employ tens of millions of people.

It promises to help you change the world (for the better), make money (important), and have fun (essential).

And for the most part it delivers on all of its promises. It's the best book I've seen that focuses what you can do in your own business to improve its value, and promote your values.

It's extremely easy to read, which means it is very well written. This is a particularly noteworthy accomplishment because business texts can often become tedious to read.

Warwick (chair of the Social Venture Network Advisory Board) and Cohen (co-founder of Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream) offer a great combination of stories, analyses, and inspiration.

This book offers a self-assessment tool to help you start a values-based business or improve your current operation. I plan to share this book with my staff so we can improve our "triple bottom line": profit, people, and planet.

I highly recommend this book, and the only drawback is that it doesn't come bundled with a gift certificate for a Ben & Jerry's ice cream cone. Perhaps next edition.
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Format: Paperback
I eventually want to start my own apparel business, but I know the industry is rife with ethical abuse. Because of this, I want to run a business that does as little harm and as much good as possible. Until a few weeks ago, I was not sure how to bring that ideal to practical fruition. After receiving "Values-Driven Business" from someone who works for a socially responsible company, many of my questions were answered.

Why am I glad I read the book? Here are some attributes:

1) It is quick to read, enjoyable, and optimistic. No gloom and doom.

2) It is a fantastic overview of socially responsible business. This is NOT a deep, complicated analysis of the topic. It is simple enough for people who aren't sure where to start and need an introduction, yet has interesting, enlightening examples for someone already familiar with socially responsible business.

3) It is well organized. The authors go over five dimensions of values-driven businesses (some of which I had not considered): employees, suppliers, customers, community (local and global), and the environment. At the end of each section is a list of specific actions that one might consider incorporating into a business to create positive change.

4) The text goes beyond black and white binary opposition, and challenges assumptions about socially responsible businesses (e.g., they can't make a profit, they make inferior products, etc.).

5) Practical examples of values-driven companies comprise the backbone of the text. This shows the principles at work, and shows that two businesses can have different ways of incorporating values; there is not one "right" way to be socially responsible.
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Format: Paperback
I think it's very clear that business--as we do it now--is not good for America. Enron and friends have shown that in quite a spectacular way but many of us have seen it in businesses of every shape and size. Pollution, genetically modified food and the lack of accessible health care in this country are just a few of the things we can thank business for. That's why this book is such a breath of fresh air and a real sign of hope for the future. Mal Warwick and Ben Cohen are the ideal people to begin leading us on path toward more sustainable economies and I am delighted with this book. The classical economist Adam Smith talked about individual interest producing a collective good for society; however, capitalism as we know it in the 21st century has steered off that path. Kudos to Mal and Ben for having the wisdom and the clarity to help us get back in line.
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Format: Paperback
Buy it now! You'll be a happier person after you read this book, whether you're in business or not. It provides great and much-needed hope and inspiration for entrepreneurs and employees of all stripes and ages, and is both a fun and easy read, with the writers' wit and heart shining throughout. (And I'm a tough-to-please newspaper editor and author!)
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This is a great book for young people starting a new business or for anyone who wants to give back and make a good living at the same time. It is an empowering read, with lots of good ideas and practical advice. Buy this book then pass it on.
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In a small but growing number of companies, making a profit is seen as only one measure of business success. In these companies, employees are viewed as profit centers and not cost centers, and are treated and compensated accordingly. In these companies, customers, suppliers, local communities and the environment are accorded stakeholder status, and their needs and concerns are reflected in major business decisions.

If you are a person whose heart is drawn to these ideas but whose head worries about their consequences, you owe it to yourself to pick up a copy of Values-Driven Business, by Mal Warwick and Jerry Cohen (of Ben & Jerry's ice cream fame.)

Warwick and Cohen have long been at the center of a progressive business movement that champions these practices. What's more, each has spent decades trying them out on their own businesses, so they don't pretend that implementing them is just a walk in the park.

That's what makes Values-Driven Business such worthy reading. There's no "blue sky" here - just an enthusiastic but evenhanded presentation of the challenges and the rewards, the joys and the struggles, the how-tos and the how-nots of building a values-based business. On top of that, the book is lighthearted, witty and unusually well-written.

As Ebert and Roeper might say, "Two big thumbs up!"
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