Business owners are not simple proprietors.
They are minor sovereigns.
More similar to counts and dukes than to shopkeepers and guild masters. This is so due to the extent to which commerce and development have shaped laws and lives.
Governments were instituted to establish national defense, ensure a monopoly on violence, provide for the people’s welfare, legislate and enforce the rule of law, and guard against the sibling excesses of tyranny and anarchy.
Some governments fail in one or more of these mandates. A few meet them. But many, and for my focus, the United States and many other advanced economies, have outsourced, in part or in full, these responsibilities to the free market. The sovereigns in that land are business owners.
I don’t offer this view as a suggestion of what is right or wrong; and this is not a commentary on your or my political preferences. This is a bare fact: The role of the business in society has greatly expanded.
Evidenced by our expectations of businesses.
We no longer expect them to trade goods and services for fair prices. But to provide health care, defend the Constitution, solve climate change, counteract discrimination and inequality, and above all, support families and communities. Therefore the responsibilities of the Business Owner, what they understand and don’t understand, the breadth or limits of the value they provide to their communities and employees, their willingness to operate beyond the expectations of a simple proprietor, are a penumbra to explicit economic forces we all study in MBA programs and read about in the Wall Street Journal.
I take personal interest in this. Both as a member of the world that will bear the brunt of the successes and failures of Business Owners, and as an advisor to them. I have skin in the game. As a citizen, and professional.
Those who write on business topics are seeking personal gain. Why wouldn’t they? In politics, when treaties are drawn, one side wins and one side loses. In business, if both sides do not win in a contract, both will eventually lose. One may gain for a short time, but not for long. And it is rare that short term gains, at the expense of these now described co-sovereign parties, will result in a NET benefit to either. Thus, I am writing for my own gain, and yours. I aim to present you something worthy of your attention and limited time.
Desiring therefore to present myself to Business Owners with some testimony of my devotion towards them, I cannot offer anything which I hold more dear or value so much as the knowledge of the actions and habits of great leaders, acquired by long experience in business affairs, and a continual study of achievement. Having reflected upon it with great and prolonged diligence, I will now organize my thoughts under the banner of “The Prince Executive.”
I expect to write this book over the next 5-10 years. During which time, through consulting and advisory, I will have helped several business owners become multi-millionaires, their employees to have stable and fulfilling work, and the families and communities around these business owners will have been made more vibrant through their success and my devoted counsel.