This is a sentiment that has been gaining traction. If business exists to benefit society, it must necessarily hold people in higher regard than profits. This is an easy narrative to sell and speak about when things are going well.
Our resolve and clarity on this point are being tested. When economies are under pressure, how do we treat our people? When future income is indeterminate and business survival is uncertain how does this trade-off play out?
These are complex questions. We could opt for a ‘lesser evil’ approach compromising the salaries of our staff now for the ability to offer them job security later. We could cut our losses and tell everyone to fend for themselves. We could enforce no work-no pay policies and hope we, and our staff weather the storm.
Certainly, there is no single solution to the many derivatives of this shared reality.
One thing is certain, the best chance your business has of survival, is in the creativity and resolve of your people. Harness that in the best way you see fit.