Leadership needed to produce prosperity
The eyes of the country will be fixed on Hofstra University tonight for the first presidential debate. “Achieving Prosperity” is one of the central debate topics, a theme that will resonate with Americans across the country.
I wrote recently that economic growth should be the number one topic before the candidates this election year. As the candidates discuss ideas to help our economy grow, it’s my hope that they address the critical role businesses play in being a partner in the success of all Americans — helping families, communities, and the country become stronger. Often lost in the heated rhetoric of a presidential campaign season is the undeniable fact that business is and can be a force for good.
So, what exactly can businesses do to help promote and achieve prosperity?
It begins with leadership. The role of business leaders extends far beyond driving quarterly results. Leaders must positively support their communities and their country by adopting ideas and strategies that lead America toward a prosperous future. Achieving this will give countless people the opportunities they seek and need to succeed.
So much is being done already. Every year Business Roundtable releases a report on company sustainability initiatives. The 133 CEOs who participated in this year’s annual sustainability report offered their personal testimonials on how their companies help protect the environment, use energy more wisely and promote sustainable business while creating new jobs.
Still, we should never remain content. We must constantly search for ways to make the workforce, workplace and economy better than ever. For example, businesses have to keep a collective eye on opportunities to help strengthen America’s workforce through education and training that leaves the country well-positioned for long-term shared success.
Business should also recognize — as most already do — they carry certain social responsibilities to have a positive impact on those communities. Building trust will allow businesses to gain a better understanding of how they can help communities become stronger.
Tonight’s debate is an important opportunity to bring these ideas to the forefront. For our part, we will remain squarely focused on how to achieve prosperity for all Americans.