Good Company

Business Success in the Worthiness Era

by Laurie Bassi

Number of pages: 264

Publisher: Berrett-Koehler Publishers

BBB Library: CSR and NGO

ISBN: 9781609940614

About the Author

Bassi is CEO of McBassi & Company, a consulting firm that helps businesses improve their results.


Editorial Review

We’re losing patience with bad companies. We’re fed up with tainted food, tightfisted employers, and “corporate social responsibility” that is more marketing spin than true caring for our communities. Society hasn’t given up on capitalist corporations. We rely on companies for the basic necessities of food, clothing, and shelter, as well as modern conveniences like computers, air travel, and wireless connectivity. But collectively we’re setting a higher standard for businesses. We’re beginning to make it more difficult for them to earn profits. A convergence of forces—economic, social, and political—is pushing businesses to be better to their employees, customers, and communities. In effect, people are demanding that companies in their lives be “good company.” 

Book Reviews

In the book, we define political very broadly; it includes things such as shareholder activism. Again because of the Internet, even small shareholders can organize and create coalitions. Another political trend we've observed is workplace democratization." - Association for Talent development

"The Good Company Index draws from publications, such as Fortune's 100 Best Companies to Work For list and the New York Times' annual report on executive compensation, as well as more frequent online employee ratings from and wRatings, which provides investment research based on weekly consumer surveys."-

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Wisdom to Share

Worthiness as an employer means treating workers decently while striking the right balance between viewing people as a cost and an asset.

In fact, good employers will combine greater care for workers with a more rigorous, analytic approach to people management than is typical today.

Through wise use of data—about interests, abilities, performance, and how these tie to overall goals—employers will set up employees to thrive. And leaders will foster an inspiring culture, in part through a compelling mission.

To deliver experiences rather than simply goods and services, companies have to maintain a consistent feel to their “brand.”

An unkempt bathroom, a rude waiter, or a flight attendant speaking from a script breaks the spell for consumers, making them think twice about their next purchase.

Akin to the way leading companies study, segment, and engage their customers, companies seeking to provide great experiences need to analyze employee performance and impact, encourage employee feedback, and empower workers to take initiative.

A key to great customer experiences, in other words, is excellent people management.

A key to success at tech services firm HCL Technologies has nothing to do with computers. It has to do with workplace democracy.

The trademark of a worthy employer is the ability to masterfully manage the tension between employees as costs and employees as assets.