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Anthony James Morris on Philanthrocapitalism: using business skills to do good

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“Whether it is big business or small business, money typically falls into three categories: capitalism, socialism and philanthropy,” notes Anthony James Morris. He sees there is a great need for individuals with a business skill set to make an impact by helping those in need. It is referred to as ‘philanthrocapitalism’. It is a philanthropic cause, but there is still capital being made through the work, with a strong giving element.

Those in the business arena, ‘doing good’ is typically defined by the balance sheet’s bottom line with an emphasis on how much money the company is making and paying out to shareholders. The creation of a product or service that meets a need and more importantly generates revenue forms the foundation of capitalism. Profit is the goal and strategic positioning of products or services is the means to achieve it.

This capitalist approach can be viewed as somewhat Machiavellian with services and products designed to meet consumer demands with little thought to environmental or social consequences or responsibilities. Many profit-based companies will offset this poor public image through the implementation of ‘Corporate Responsibility’ programs. There are many options available from offsetting corporate carbon footprints by reducing waste to giving back to the community - (locally or globally) - through various charitable endeavors.

Capitalism may not appeal to everyone, but it’s a necessary component to the success of any economy. Socialism is generally considered a more noble undertaking. A greater emphasis is placed on providing value-added products or services to meet human needs over profit generation. Greater attention is paid to the individual needs within society to ensure products and services are made available where most needed. Revenue is still generated, but as a means to ensure sustainability in the provision of products and services with a significantly lower priority placed on profit generation.

Philanthropy is by far the noblest of the three with an admirable focus on taking from plenty and sharing with those in need. Philanthropy is defined as a ‘love of humanity’ in the sense of caring, nourishing, developing, and enhancing ‘what it is to be human’ on the benefactors and the beneficiaries.

While an undoubtedly righteous use of wealth, the reality is that money is needed to undertake most philanthropic endeavors.

Admittedly, the approach to business vastly differs between capitalism, socialism, and philanthropy; there are two areas of great commonality: money and the skills needed to acquire it. The right individual possesses a particular skill set able to identify opportunity and implement a system to capitalize on that opportunity, ideally with a plan to ensure sustainability of revenue generation.

These highly sought professionals now have a new area to apply their skills and they no longer have to choose between capitalism and philanthropy. In spite of the significantly stronger connection between philanthropy and socialism than capitalism, a new player has emerged in the form of ‘philanthrocapitalism.’

Anthony James Morris Knows How Giving Can Change the World

It must be accepted that money is not ‘the root of all evil’ but, when in the right hands, can be used to improve society. Philanthrocapitalism is a marriage of the best capitalism has to offer with the noble, and much needed, generosity of philanthropy. Identifying investment opportunities is being blended with identifying social needs and the results are gaining the attention of many in the traditional business world.

Philanthrocapitalist companies that benefit the environment through recycling and in turn produce socially responsible products are emerging in the marketplace. Anthony James Morris is a preeminent figure in the movement. His experience came while working to build housing and infrastructure in South Africa, alongside Nelson Mandela. His company takes plastic waste, recycles it, and turns it into housing that typically go to third world countries and countries that have gone through disaster situations.

Charitable foundations are facing significant challenges to set themselves apart from the competition and secure funding for their good works. Recent numbers show there are over 1.5 million nonprofit organizations in the United States alone. Donations are harder and harder to come by as the economy continues to play a major role in the financial decisions of individuals, governments and private companies.

Anthony James Morris knows philanthrocapitalism has all the indicators of being the new, smart business approach to doing good works. Good people provide the right skill sets to make a positive difference in society.

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