Shareholders and stakeholders
The main topic of this session is the analysis of the interdependencies of a company
with its environment and how this environment can influence wealth creation. A newconcept,
to understand those interactions, is introduced by the authors: « Extended enterprise ». They
define this new type of enterprise, which emerges in the 21st century, as a part of a largenetwork with both internal and external dependencies. All these relationships can be more or
less critical for the whole business or a particular issue, and the people or organizations that
caninfluence the corporation are called stakeholders.
The new vision of stakeholders given by this article is to recognize the mutual interest
among the firm and its stakeholders and also the interactionsbetween the different
dimensions of stakeholders. Indeed, stakeholders in this vision are represented in three
different dimensions : Resource base, industry structure and social political arena.
Anexample of the importance of stakeholders management is Monsanto. This
company is a leader in « life-science » industries. The first approach for them was to impose
their products to the publicwithout trying to listen or to answer public interrogations. This
attitude, even if Monsanto was convinced that their products were safe, failed to reduce
public skepticism. In consequence, the secondattitude was to manage all the stakeholders
that can influence the public and who have interdependencies with Monsanto to convince
them and then convince the public by sharing, showing and adaptingtheir business to their
Firms give more or less importance to the different types of stakeholders. « Business
» stakeholders are considered as a part of the « core » creation of wealth, soit was and it is
more natural to companies to optimize their relationships with clients, suppliers, employees…
In opposite it was more difficult to see the importance of relations with social and...
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