Running a business is a difficult task, no matter what sector or market you chose to operate in. Managing the often dichotomous relationships that will always exist between meeting your commercial obligations - managing business performance and shareholder returns - against the requirements of your customers and, increasingly, the regulators, is complex.
Increasingly, the requirements of customers, investors and regulators are aligning when it comes to understanding - and reporting on - the impact that your business has, in the following 3 dimensions:
The known, forseeable or potential impacts of your business on the environment. This might include but not be limited to: greenhouse gas emissions, carbon footprint, pollution, waste management, energy use, water use, recycling and reprocessing.
The known, forseeable or potential impacts of your business in relation to employment law, equality, health & safety, International Labor Organisation requirements, social protection, employee rights, local community engagement and support, human rights, anti-bribery and corruption, diversity.
The known, forseeable or potential issues arising from your firm's business model, it's decision making processes, policies and and control frameworks. This will include (but not be limited) to potential issues across the supply chain, vendor and third party risk management and due diligence. In addition, it will consider the risk profile of the business and its overall attitide to risk management and the culture that exists within the organisation.
It's worth noting that a Business Model is not a Business Plan. The Business Plan relates to the operationalisation of the Business Model - i.e. the goals that underpin it, specific plans to achieve them and (usually) a high level view of the financial summaries, and details of the team that are intended to deliver them.