Chapter 2

Legal Compliance Is Merely a Step Toward Sustainable Business

Compliance as Bare Minimum Care

Complying with the law is necessary, but not sufficient, to run a sustainable enterprise. The law does not say what is desirable behavior per se, but merely what is tolerable behavior. In this way, law establishes the normative boundaries of acceptable conduct. The terms for operating a business in civil society are thus: violate the law, and face some form of punishment; comply with the law, and avoid punitive measures from government. Clearly, compliance with the law is not so much a recipe for success as it is a means of avoiding failure. Violating the law is usually not, and never should be, a managerial goal. But neither should mere compliance ...

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