Whole Foods founder says business leaders need purpose beyond ‘only making money’

Industry leaders got a call-to-action from one of their own in a new book that examines how businesses serve their communities.

In a follow-up to his book “Conscious Capitalism,” John Mackey, CEO and founder of Whole Foods and co-author of another book, “Conscious Leadership,” said we need more thoughtful leaders in all aspects of our lives.

“We desperately need conscious leaders right now in America. There’s so much hatred, so much anger and so much fear,” Mackey said.

“We need more conscious leaders who will lead with love, who will find win-win solutions to our problems, [Leaders who will] find the higher ground where Americans can begin to move together.”

The head of Whole Foods said American businesses sit at the brink of a new era, where capitalism and leadership are being transformed.

The protests that have continued as a result of the killing of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor have many leaders from corporations to schools taking a new look at how they are serving their communities.

“Finding a higher purpose besides only making money is important for a business,” Mackey said.

The CEO of the supermarket chain said business leaders should serve communities and not treat businesses like a competition.

“We’re so attached to a sort of a win-lose framework, where somebody is winning and somebody else is losing. You are either good or you’re are evil,” Mackey said.

“If you’re getting rich somebody else is getting poor. There’s this sort of binary framework that people use to sort of translate what’s happening, and it’s not accurate.”

He said the purpose of a business must now be equal to how a company earns their profit to inform decisions and create cultures that build better lives for all.

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