Competitive Theory and Business Legitimacy: Article

Rather than write two posts today, I’d like to point you to my article at on Michael Porter, competitive theory and business legitimacy.  Or rather, on how business can regain its legitimacy, which is at generational lows.

The issue of business legitimacy was raised in by my old (and very distinguished) professor Michael Porter, who suggested that legitimacy has to be regained not through charity but by having part of businesses core purpose be to do good.  I think this is correct, as far as it goes, but I suggest taking a long term perspective may be more successful than his way.

Click on over to and read today’s post there.  Let me know what you think, because it’s about more than just legitimacy, it’s about how and why we run our businesses.

2 replies
  1. JF Rapp
    JF Rapp says:

    Congrats, Charlie.  BusinessWeek is exactly the kind & size  of podium you — & this issue — need & deserve.  I wonder if you — or anyone in this network — has any experience with devices like bCorps, "Business as Mission" (a new/ish Christian movement), and/or the MBA Oath?  I, too, find this lecture, coming from Porter, to be a bit unexpected.  But in a time/zeitgeist in which Reich has given up on such sentiment, anything may be possible.

  2. John W. Taylor
    John W. Taylor says:

    Charlie, You make some excellent points in your article.  However, much of the problem is currently woven within our society.  Globalization has resulted in connected world, which for all its good, means that one or two bad eggs can take down everyone.  Second, we live in a society of soundbites and short-term rewards.  Even Warren Buffett is only considered as good as his most recent results by much of the media (remember how bashed he was during the era?).  Marketing trumps quality in almost every scenario. VHS over beta.  Microsoft over Apple.

    I think that you are on to something with how businesses need to merge their missions with social benefits.  However, in a world where one bad apple can bring down the whole ship, it might not be enough.  It only takes one violent protester to turn a peaceful demonstration into a riot.  

    John W. Taylor

    Tiarta LLC



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