Shapeholders: Business Success in the Age of Activism by Mark KennedyShapeholders: Business Success in the Age of Activism by Mark Kennedy

Shapeholders: Business Success in the Age of Activism

byMark Kennedy

Hardcover | May 9, 2017

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Today, all it takes is one organizational misstep to sink a company's reputation. Social media can be a strict ethical enforcer, with the power to convince thousands to boycott products and services. Executives are stuck on appeasing stakeholders—shareholders, employees, and consumers—but they ignore shapeholders, regulators, the media, and social and political activists who have no stake in a company but will work hard to curb what they see as bad business practices. And they do so at their own peril.

In Shapeholders: Business Success in the Age of Activism, former congressman, Fortune 500 executive, and university president Mark Kennedy argues that shapeholders, as much as stakeholders, have significant power to determine a company's risks and opportunities, if not its survival. Many international, multi-billion-dollar corporations fail to anticipate activism, and they flounder on first contact. Kennedy zeroes in on the different languages that shapeholders and companies speak and their contrasting metrics for what constitutes acceptable business practice. Executives, he argues, must be visionaries who find profitable—and probable—collaborations to diffuse political tensions. Kennedy's decision matrix helps corporations align their business practices with shapeholder interests, anticipate their demands, and assess changing moral standards so that together they can plan a profitable route forward.
Mark R. Kennedy is president of the University of North Dakota, founder of the Economic Club of Minnesota, and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He has served as treasurer of Macy's, a U.S. congressional representative, a presidential trade advisor under Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, and director of George Was...
Title:Shapeholders: Business Success in the Age of ActivismFormat:HardcoverDimensions:304 pagesPublished:May 9, 2017Publisher:Columbia University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:023118056X

ISBN - 13:9780231180566

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Table of Contents

Introduction: From the Heart of a Businessman
Who Are the Shapeholders?
1. Shapeholders
2. Social Activists
3. The Media
4. Politicians
5. Regulators
Seven Steps to Shapeholder Success
6. Align with a Purpose
7. Anticipate
8. Assess
9. Avert
10. Acquiesce
11. Advance Common Interests
12. Assemble to Win
13. Pope Francis, a CEO Worth Emulating

Editorial Reviews

This book provides top-level leaders with a powerful approach to embracing unseen opportunities that lie in what at first appear to be threatening risks. Kennedy's credentials are indisputable-it's clear through the many personal experiences with activists from business and politics provides him the gravitas only real engagement can deliver.