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How the JUST 100 is Reshaping American Business

The truly great companies of today are the ones that lead in purpose and invest in stakeholders to ensure long-term profitability. But for investors, differentiating and evaluating companies’ “goodness” can be challenging, even as more companies make and report on ESG commitments. And for business leaders, determining how to create long-term value for all stakeholders can be unclear. JUST Capital provides a solution. 

JUST Capital, a nonprofit organization with a purpose to equip the market with these insights, released its annual JUST 100 rankings at the beginning of 2022. The organization’s methodology combines polling from the American public to define the issues that matter most in a given year with weighted standards that are then used to rank companies. “Just” companies are assessed based on their performance across five core categories: Workers, Communities, Shareholders & Governance, Customers, and Environment. This year, the top three concerns of the American public included paying a fair living wage, creating US jobs, and prioritizing stakeholder value creation. 

To share insights on this year’s rankings, we welcomed back to the show JUST Capital’s CEO Martin Whittaker. 

Listen in for Martin’s insights on:

  • The attributes of high-ranking companies and recommendations for companies looking to invest in the interests of the American public. 
  • The transition from a “trust me” to a “show me” mentality with sustainability reporting. 
  • The role of boards and how successful boards are able to put talk into action. 
  • Why social sustainability will be the prominent focus in 2022. 
  • What factors caused a shift in companies rising and falling on the 2022 JUST 100 rankings. 

Links & Notes

  • (00:00) – Welcome to Purpose 360
  • (00:13) – The JUST 100 with Martin Whittaker from JUST Capital
  • (03:20) – Meet Martin
  • (04:11) – What Is JUST Capital?
  • (06:57) – The Genesis
  • (08:55) – Polling
  • (11:29) – This Year
  • (14:38) – Desired Ranking
  • (18:17) – Advice & Counsel
  • (21:13) – Surprises
  • (29:45) – 7 Imperatives
  • (35:19) – Working With Boards
  • (40:21) – Communication
  • (44:01) – Employees’ Voices
  • (46:14) – Meaning & Flexibility
  • (49:50) – Three Suggestions to Become a More Just Company
  • (53:33) – Wrap Up
  • (55:50) – Last Words

Business is an unlikely hero: a force for good working to solve society’s most pressing challenges, while boosting bottom line. This is social purpose at work. And it’s a dynamic journey.

Purpose 360 is a masterclass in unlocking the potential of social purpose to ignite business and social impact. We illuminate the growing impacts of purpose, from engaging employees and fostering deeper consumer loyalty to inspiring product innovation and increasing market share.