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Putting People First: the importance of human-centered business

What is a human-centered business?

A human-centered business focuses on more than merely sustaining its operational functions. It considers social issues, the environment, and the people who make up their business, communities, and customer base. 

In a very simplified phrase, it puts people before profit.

A strong business must consider its financial standing to grow and thrive. 

However, human-centered businesses calculate their financials and craft strategies with people at the forefront rather than as an afterthought. 

Human-centric businesses have become a buzzword, with large corporations attempting to capture the younger market, such as Gen-Z. Stereotypically, Millennials and Gen-Z try to support ethical companies and “vote with their dollar.”

Definition Debate

If you research human-centered business, there are many definitions and strategies offered. 

This is mainly because the concept is new, and there has yet to be a consensus on what exactly defines a human-centered business. 

  • Is it a company like Tom’s or Warby Parker that offers a one-for-one donation structure? 

  • Is it a firm that puts the integrity, health, and happiness of its employees first? 

  • Or, is it a brand that emphasizes design thinking as its core strategy? 

In many ways, the answer is yes to all of the above. 

Ultimately, the point is integrating consideration for the greater good into your business strategy. 

Why it is important

It’s no secret that we are in late-stage capitalism. While capitalism drove the industrial revolution, innovated modern medicine, and provided this wild experience known as the internet, it’s not all positive progress.

  • Pharmaceutical companies exponentially increase the cost to the consumer for life-saving medication. (Think Epi-Pens and Insulin.) 
  • Large tech companies commoditized our personal information and turned our online activities into goods for purchase. 
  • Capitalism has shifted to prioritize short-term revenue at the expense of everything else.

But it’s changing.

Enter human-centered business. 

Enter new generations who would rather lift one another up, even if it means less net revenue. 

We’re entering a new phase of business where assets include human happiness, comfort, and equity

Modern ethical businesses understand that growth is not only possible but, in fact, advanced through considering the big picture and prioritizing our fellow humanity. 

This is the answer to many of the issues that currently burden our society.

Business has always been at the forefront of progress and innovation. 

Human-centered business and ethical growth are the new frontiers.  

Are you a human-centered business owner?

If so, I’d love to work with you. Together we can make incredible change. 

Additional Reading + Sources

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