Profit motive vs. LO LO23782

From: John Gunkler (
Date: 01/18/00

Replying to LO23674 --

Lest we get hung up on just one example (Southwest Airlines), how about
some others.

I'll start: Ben & Jerry's. Ben introduced the notion of the "double
bottom line" where they pay attention equally to doing social good and to
financial success. There's a model that can be emulated.

Mazda (in the 1980's): The company was dying and the Wankel (rotary)
engine was obviously not a selling point, so they decided to shut down
operations and retool their factories to produce cars with conventional
engines. This put a tremendous financial burden on the company. How did
they fund it? By laying people off? No. The cut the salaries of senior
managers by 50%, of middle managers by 25%, and of front-line workers by
.... nothing! Their stated logic: It was managers' decisions that got us
into this fix, not anything workers did, so why should the workers suffer?
(Note also how practical this is ... cutting one highly-paid person's
salary by 50% is the financial equivalent of firing several low-paid
workers! Take note, GM!! A 50% salary cut for your big guys earning $6
million/year would pay the salaries of a whole lot of engineers and
production-line employees.)

John W. Gunkler


"John Gunkler" <>

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