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Business and Professional Ethics Journal

Volume 26, Issue 1/4, 2007

David Y. Choi, Edmund R. Gray
Pages 71-99

Financial Management Practices of Socially Responsible Entrepreneurs

This paper examines the business practices of socially responsible entrepreneurs with particular focus on activities that directly impact their companies’ finances. We collect case studies of 30 recognized socially responsible entrepreneurial firms from a wide range of industries. We analyze how and to what extent the entrepreneurs and their companies balance their profit objectives with their social or environmental goals. Our results indicate that the companies pursue profits in manners comparable to those of most conventional businesses. However, we learn that our companies make certain deliberate exceptions in their business practices to exercise their beliefs, although such actions may reduce profi ts. We also observe the entrepreneurs making efforts to identify situations that simultaneously increase the companies’ profits and serve their causes. Most companies choose to stay private and commit to building an enduring organization rather than pursue the conventional exit strategies. Finally, we find that many of the companies in our list commit themselves to and proactively manage formalized giving programs.