Coffee is big business these days. It is also multinational. In addition, coffee houses are the hub of business activity for many entrepreneurs. Starbucks is the leading player in this world-wide movement, and in this issue we sat down with Orin Smith, their CEO, to learn the inside story. Order a grande latte and enjoy the account. A synopsis of this conversation can be found in a new feature, The Executive Summary.
For a contrast, we talked with John Sage, CEO of Pura Vida, offering 100% fair trade coffee on many university campuses. His business model should open the door to lots of discussion.
PS Don’t miss the special subscription offer at the end of the Technology Watch column!
Ethical failure in business has made too many headlines
Business ethics is much more than staying out of the headlines— it is also a major factor in focusing the mission
Technology is the major force for change in business, often leading to business situations with no policies, rules, or experience
Understanding these potential changes will help us anticipate future ethical problem areas and help us use technology more effectively in business
In spite of the business failures, there are many successes and we can learn a great deal from companies that try to do it right
No one is perfect, and even the best of businesses and business leaders may fail, often causing people to reject an otherwise good example
A good practice is a good practice, even if failure occurs or if the business leader may have weaknesses in other areas
Discussions with great (but imperfect) leaders demonstrating novel and good practices
Stories of failures and recovery plans
Novel aspects of technology that may have a transformative influence on business
Books and media reviews, problem cases, key items from the press, and forums on popular issues
We do not endorse all the viewpoints we publish, but present those that help us to clarify issues or see another side of a difficult issue. Thus, we offer a forum for many points of view, not just our own. We will continue to look for a mix of viewpoints from business leader to manager caught in the middle; from small to large companies across a variety of industries; from Western companies to global companies. Our goal is to provide insight, ideas, and “takeaways” for business leaders, business participants, and academics in the field of business.