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SHIFT at UAPC w LogoPerhaps the easiest part of starting Joe Mechlinski’s new company – a network of local business executives and entrepreneurs launched this year – was coming up with a name. After all, the goal of his Baltimore business, he says, is to “shift the thinking, shift the conversation, shift the engagement and shift the purpose of business.”

The name of the company: SHIFT.

What Mechlinski envisions is a business community that doesn’t just focus on profits but “on having meaningful and lasting impact on the community,” and helping to find “solutions to some of the world’s biggest solvable problems in education, health, the environment and society.”

He eventually plans to build chapters around the country.

Mechlinski, who founded and is still CEO of entreQuest, a Baltimore firm that helps businesses grow, knows his goals are lofty. But SHIFT is already in high gear.

Not yet one-year-old, the company has signed on 15 members, including the leaders of such groups as the Conscious Venture Fund and Habitat for Humanity of the Chesapeake, and has worked with a number of organizations, including the Baltimore City Police and the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory.

“We haven’t achieved the ultimate goal,” Mechlinski said, “but we are impacting our community and have had a ton of small wins along the way.”