The paper "Michael Porter’ s Solution to Social Problems" is a wonderful example of an essay on business. Michael Porter’ s solution to social problems fundamentally lies in the ability of businesses to address these problems with a business model, a concept he refers to shared value. According to Porter, the majority of businesses operate with the misconstrued presumption that the only way to generate more revenue is by ignoring social problems. The result, the magnitude of the scale of social problems increases exponentially. The deficiency of economic resources makes it implausible for entities tasked with solving social problems to find sustainable solutions.
Therefore, Porter recommends a change in past conventional thinking, which will allow businesses to solve social problems while simultaneously generating profitable revenue. According to him, profit allows solutions to social problems to be self-sustaining and infinitely scalable. Porter’ s vision allows for coalescing of different perspectives held by various entities, as the latter are able to engage in collaborative efforts targeting the mitigation of social problems. Often, companies hold different views pertaining to social problems. For example, the legalization of same-sex marriages remains a divisive social issue for businesses across the globe.
Companies like Starbucks support the legalization of same-sex marriages, as they infer that such a stance attests to the company’ s strict non-discriminatory policies (Smith, 2013). Conversely, companies like Chick-fil-A subtly oppose the legalization of same-sex marriages on grounds of religiously defined morality (Aarthun, 2012). Regardless of the fact that companies disagree on whether to support or oppose social issues, they play a pivotal role in addressing social problems. Porter (2013) inferred that companies are the only entities capable of generating revenue, which is crucial in solving social problems in a self-sustaining manner.
Therefore, companies are capable of being the solution to social problems especially if they chose to focus on social issues that resonate with their mission, vision, and objectives. Porter (2013) posits that all companies should approach the solution of social problems with a business model. Beyond that, companies are at the liberty to institute their own unique strategies aimed at the reduction of operational costs and the maximization of profits. In addition, companies should also target social issues that are in their jurisdictional operational area.
For example, Porter lists companies that are turning a profit by focusing on specific social issues such as CISCO focusing on IT projects. The government plays a pivotal role in the solution of social problems. In the past, governments took on the bulk of the responsibility of solving social problems. This approach proved unsustainable, as the costs of mitigating social problems were too high. By collaborating with businesses, governments are able to spread the costs; therefore direct resources to other projects aimed at benefiting the public. The state cannot afford to simply propose solutions to problems.
Instead, governments should take on a more proactive role to mitigate social problems. Collaborative efforts between governments, NGOs, and privately owned entities stand to yield more sustainable solutions to social problems. Change is inevitable. With change comes resistance, which is the backbone of most issues; for example, social change results in social problems. It is important for entities operating in a specific society to be mindful of social issues, as they often impede success. Only after recognizing a social problem can one seek to capitalize on it.
For example, diversity at the workplace be it cultural, racial, or linguistic, has the potential to adversely affect operations. Due to factors such as increased immigration and social change such as acceptance of diverse sexual orientations, populations are becoming more diverse. By instituting strategies aimed at dealing with diversity in a positive manner, companies are able to reap its benefits.