THE CEO INITIATIVE: DOING WELL BY DOING GOOD
In 2017 Fortune and Time launched an important new initiative for the CEOs of companies committed to addressing major social issues as part of their core business strategies. The CEO Initiative—which convened September 25, 2017, in New York City— will build upon the efforts we launched last year at a landmark meeting with Pope Francis at the Vatican, while also tapping into the impact of Fortune’s “Change the World” list of companies that are “doing well by doing good.”
Most can agree that injecting purpose into the core of your business strategy is a key success factor for modern companies. It’s critical to your company’s ability to attract and motivate the best talent, it deepens bonds with consumers, and it serves as a steadying keel for corporate reputation in an era when the winds of social media can change at a moment’s notice. Moreover, it’s increasingly clear that governments alone are incapable of solving the most intractable challenges, making the role of the private sector more important than ever.
What’s less obvious—and the area to which The CEO Initiative is most directly dedicated—is how to undertake this task most effectively. It is not about charity nor is it about “CSR” in the traditional sense; rather, it starts with identifying the power of your company to address critical unmet needs, harnessing that power comprehensively and authentically, and calling attention to the good your business is doing in the world.
The CEO Initiative brought together the CEOs of some of the world’s most enlightened companies to exchange best practices and leadership techniques, develop actionable solutions, and track tangible progress. In addition, Fortune and Time will leverage our media platforms to spotlight worthy examples of corporate leadership at our September 25 meeting, as celebrated in our 2017 “Change the World” list—which this year will be featured in a special double issue of Fortune. Participation is by invitation and non-transferable, with each CEO member invited to bring with them one accompanying executive.