Has the meaning of the word ‘profit’ been lost?

A new approach to healthy profits

As the founder and owner of a business I understand the importance of profit. I recognise that it helps our business stay financially healthy and provides us with the opportunity to keep doing more good things over the long term. When I think about the word profit I start reflecting on why it has become such a dirty word within the world of business. Too often, it is because of the way it is achieved which is at the detriment of people’s health.

What concerns me is the unhealthy obsession that we have with profits and how individuals and organisations prioritise profits at the expense of health, people, customers and the environment. I am concerned with the unhealthy habits and toxic behaviours that people and businesses engage with to ensure that they are running at profit.

The unhealthy pursuit of profits can create a culture of competition and individualism that can harm teams and relationships. Organisations that prioritise profits above all else may overlook the importance of their people’s wellbeing and may create a toxic work environment that is stressful and unhealthy.


‘We define healthy profits as – profits achieved not at the detriment of your peoples health…’


The problem lies with how people and businesses believe profit should be achieved. Long working hours, excessive workloads, high amounts of pressure, being available at all times, showing no sign of weakness and being on it 24/7 are just a few of the workplace practises that businesses believe are needed to achieve profit.

Healthy people drive healthy profits.

I can tell you right now that these are not the habits of a healthy high performing culture. I can also tell you that I don’t think there is any research or evidence that positively correlates toxic workplace behaviours with more profit. I am actually pretty confident that the prioritisation of short term financial gain over the long term health of people can lead to toxic cultures of overwork and burnout.

At BelievePerform we believe that healthy people drive healthy profits. We define healthy profits as “profits achieved not at the detriment of your peoples health”. Profit that is generated without compromising or harming the health and wellbeing of your people. This narrative acknowledges that healthy people and healthy teams are an essential component of strategy and crucial for achieving sustainable profits. It also recognises that profit can have a wider lens and be more than just financial gain. It should include ethical, social and environmental profit which are all  key components that support strategy and drive culture. 

Recognising your people.

Let’s not forget people profit.  A people profit approach recognises that people are the most valuable asset of a business and that investing in their health, growth and development can lead to both financial success and employee wellbeing.


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