We are used to regard a business as a means of making a living, contrary to ethics, considering the latter as generosity, renounce or sacrifice. However, when speaking about business we tend to see businesspeople as predators who take advantage of their fellows to get more benefits. This is a business concept handed down from the past.

The etymology of the word Business implies being anxious, as business means “state of being busy’”. Business includes all those activities which aim at getting any kind of benefit or profit.

Currently, the latest developments do not only deem Business as the opposite to ethics, but as it necessary complement.

Firstly, ethics deals with relationships between people. Nobody can be ethical living on their own. Ethics is practiced towards other people, a community or a society.

Consequently, the first strategic question when developing an economic activity is: ¿Is it better to behave as a predator considering others as potential victims, or is it better to achieve their collaboration and complicity? That is, can we make a business dodging its social dimension? ¿Is there any non-social wealth?

Wealth has a social origin, and therefore, must have a social responsibility.

We can define ethics as the understanding of our actions based on the freedom of individuals

Secondly, concepts such as Freedom and Responsibility must be deeply intertwined, being at the end, synonyms. Freedom is the capability of deciding and committing the acts we want, and responsibility is assuming the consequences of our acts or decisions.

Hence, we can name various types of responsibilities:

Social Responsibility. It consists in assuming the impact of our acts on other members of our society. All members of our society are responsible in face of it, and the responsibility must be demanded by all groups of society, not just by related groups.

Legal Liability. Specific businessperson liability regarding its trading activity. Legal liability maintains social security and trading safety.

Pedagogic Responsibility. Businesspeople, as society leaders, should be good examples to spread a proper social behavior.

To sum up, the real lifetime business is to develop an activity which favors our individual integration in our community.

Spanish version here.