As published in The Marketplace Magazine Nov-Dec. 2018
Seattle Pacific University is producing a fascinating project that will be of interest to anyone who shares the MEDA vision of doing business in a manner that is informed by their faith.
Faith & Co: Business on Purpose, is a series of short films about companies, shaped by, and living into, a faith-inspired vision of business, says professor Kenman Wong, who teaches business ethics at Seattle Pacific. The goal of the project is to inspire Christian business people to more deeply align their work with God’s redemptive activity in the world.
The first season of the films, 13 episodes, were filmed across three continents, including 18 US cities.
Companies profiled in the films include high tech, health care, retail, industry and property management.
One episode, entitled God Loves Cabinets, tells the story of Washington entrepreneur Steve Bell, who nearly lost everything after being defrauded. He reached out to his creditors and promised to repay the $100,000 he owed, a process that took over six years. A subsequent business, Belmont Cabinets, grew to 200 employees, shrunk to 85 during the last recession, and has since rebounded to employ 350.
Another story, Elevation Burger, relates founder Hans Hess’ goal of making a healthier version of the iconic American fast food meal, using creation care and sustainable practices in development and production. The firm’s burgers are made with grass-fed organic meat.
In 2015, USA Today ran an article crediting his firm for convincing industry giants McDonalds and Chick-Fil-A to remove antibiotics from their food.
Study guides to facilitate group discussion of the series can be purchased through their website. The 10-week study guide explores topics that include business as a calling, ethics and values, employees, customers, poverty and justice, and creation care.
There is also a free, eight-week online course available. The next course starts Jan.22, with registration opening Nov. 26.