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Jim Hannan at Detroit Economic Club: Businesses create value by improving people’s lives

February 28, 2019

min read

Don’t fear change. When businesses embrace it, adapt to it, and drive it, they can benefit everybody in society.

That was the key message from Jim Hannan, executive vice president and CEO for Koch – Enterprises, during his talk at a recent Detroit Economic Club meeting. For Koch’s businesses, the “winds of creative destruction” mean that “we’ve got to have a mindset internally that we can’t be complacent with success, and that we’ve got to drive that creative destruction in our own businesses,” Hannan said.


Profit is only one measure of a business’ success; for Koch, businesses add value to society by providing products and services people value more than their alternatives while simultaneously using fewer resources.

“We look at the role of business maybe differently than some others do,” he said. “Our focus is long-term value creation, where we only benefit to the extent that we create value for our customers and constituencies.”

Hannan also fielded questions from attendees, with topics including the outlook for Koch businesses, the company’s ongoing investments in new technology and businesses, its management philosophy and Guiding Principles, and more.

Listen to the full discussion, “The Role of Business: Creating Value in Society,” here.


Jim Hannan is responsible for oversight of Georgia-Pacific, Guardian®, Invista, Molex, and Koch Industries’ acquired interest in Infor, and for driving transformational change and knowledge sharing among these and all Koch companies.