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“Business Does Better With Love”

By Shlomo Maital

So let’s be clear. Friendships do better with love. Marriage does better with love. Religion does better with love. Love does better with love. Obvious, right?

   Everything does better with love. Even war. Respect your enemy and retain your humanity even when fighting for your life.

   But – business?? After several decades of teaching MBA classes, in business schools that preach hard-core bottom-line business warfare, I am reading Moshe Engelberg’s new book, first of a series, The Amare Wave, with a combination of delight and perhaps, amusement – at how those who preach fierce capitalism will respond to it. *  (Amare means ‘love’ in Latin).

     Engelberg is a successful business consultant, founder of ResearchWorks; he has a Ph.D. degree from Stanford University.

     Business does better with love, Engelberg shows. Love for whom? Love for your stakeholders – your workers, managers, clients, shareholders… all those who have a stake in your success. It’s a mystery why so many businesses purposely exploit and squeeze their workers, when long-term, respectful love given to them drives long-term loyalty and motivation. If everything does better with love – why then have economists sold the idea that business is the exception – and business does well only with knife-in-the-teeth competition, perhaps the only human endeavor that is a no-love zone?

     How is company success measured? By short-term operating profits? How about, Engelberg writes, how well people are treated?   By how much real value is created for clients?   Imagine, Engelberg writes, that love is not only “the new necessity in business, it is simply how business is done in the 21st C and beyond”. And guess what? Because business is done better with love, it is also, in the end, more profitable. Engelberg knows; he has long years of experience as a consultant.

     Imagine — business acts to become kind, green, socially responsible, philanthropic and good for society. Imagine. All business.

   I eagerly await Engelberg’s second book in the series – a set of stories about love in business. I kind of wish Engelberg had started the series with the stories – narratives are, I think, far more powerful than polemics.

     Show us, Moshe, how business really does work better. You have a tough road ahead – Amazon, Facebook, Google are not exactly Mother Teresa. Google’s “do no harm” has done loads of harm, and Facebook doesn’t even pretend to do good, while Amazon ruins many small retail businesses and squeezes workers.

     Here are today’s market cap figures for these three companies: Google $894 b., Amazon $869 b., Facebook $551 b.   In contrast: Exxon’s market cap is only $67 b.

       Could Google, Facebook and Amazon have even bigger long-term market caps, if they practiced Engelberg-style love?   Well, I believe they could – but right now, very few agree.

     Alas.

= = = = =

  • Moshe Engelberg, with Stacey Aaronson. The Amare Wave: Uplifting Business by Putting Love to Work. Angel Mountain Press, 2019. 359 pages.

 

Trump is a Fraud – His Business Failures

 By Shlomo Maital

Trump

Look… the American people have the right to choose whichever Republican candidate they wish for President. They have every right to shout their disaffection with the incompetent, squabbling politicians in Washington who have led American astray, on both sides of the aisle. They have every right to choose Trump.

But what truly disturbs and angers me, is Trump’s lie.

He says that as a successful billionaire businessman, he can run America better than someone who worked as a community organizer in Chicago.

   Wait. Successful businessman?   Here is the lie.   According to TIME magazine, Trump has a very very very VERY long string of business failures to his ‘credit’,   after inheriting millions from his dad.   Here is the list:

  • Trump Airlines
  • Trump Vodka
  • The Bankruptcies
  • The Hair
  • The Marriages
  • Trump Mortgage
  • Trump: The Game
  • The China Connection
  • Trump Casinos

 

In his recent victory speech he displayed Trump Steaks…which went out of business in 2007. And his casinos???   The Trump Taj Mahal in Atlantic City went broke. Here is the story: (from TIME):

   Donald Trump’s gambles don’t always go as planned. Especially when that gamble is gambling itself. In February 2009, Trump Entertainment Resorts Inc. filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection for the third time in a row — an extremely rare feat in American business. The casino company, founded in the 1980s, runs the Taj Mahal, the Trump Plaza and the Trump Marina. All three casinos are located in Atlantic City, N.J., where the gambling industry has faced a decline in tourists who prefer gambling in Pennsylvania and Connecticut instead. Trump defended himself by distancing himself from the company, though he owned 28% of its stock. “Other than the fact that it has my name on it — which I’m not thrilled about — I have nothing to do with the company,” he said. He resigned from Trump Entertainment soon after that third filing, and in August of that year he, along with an affiliate of Beal Bank Nevada, agreed to buy the company for $100 million. The company reported it emerged from bankruptcy in July 2010.

 

   I think what Trump is doing is running for President, to enhance the brand value of his name, which he sells at exorbitant prices to legitimate businesses.

   So, if you want to help Donald Trump pay for his private jet by ‘branding’ himself, vote for him.

   If you want someone who really understands business – well, Bloomberg does, parlaying his $10 m. in severance pay into a multi-billion dollar business he created, but he withdrew, precisely because he did not want to pave the way for a Trump presidency.

How ironic.

   A failed businessman defeats a highly successful one, because people just don’t seem to get it and are happy and willing to be duped.

   Make America Great again? Dump Trump.

 

Blog entries written by Prof. Shlomo Maital

Shlomo Maital

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