“In terms of power and influence, you can forget about the church, forget politics. There is no more powerful institution in society than business… The business of business should not be about money, it should be about responsibility. It should be about public good, not private greed.”
-Anita Roddick, Business as Usual
Business is a part of the society and the time is gone when business houses could separate them from the rest of the community. The business houses and corporations affect the survival of many people, their surroundings, natural resources and the environment often by implementing their aggressive and profitable business strategies. The Importance of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) in Today’s Business.
At present business houses have to take more responsibilities than just generating profits for the company. Today, profitable institutions must fulfill a great deal of responsibilities which include the fair treatment programs for employees, ensuring safe and secured working atmosphere for the workers, fundamental and friendly methods for a sustainable environment and participation in social causes to alleviate social issues and resolve ethical dilemmas etc.
Business in itself is power. Business houses and corporations can embrace CSR to help the society and the community in which they operate to finding a solution to their problems. We cannot sit idle and expect that problems will go away unless we take the responsibility to resolve them.
Public trust on business is declining each day. Today businesses can’t satisfy the public expectations only through creating job opportunities or contributing to the economy. At present public are conscious about environmental issues, social problems and are aware about their rights and social justice. Public expect that the rich and flourishing companies would contribute to local charities or orphanages providing relief to the needy in the society or they would contribute to the humanitarian organizations to help people in the time of disasters. The public expect companies to be more accountable and open for reporting on their performance in environmental and social arenas. Keeping this scenario in mind investing in CSR and social infrastructure has become a necessary part of conducting the business.
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CSR is about striking a balance between business and societal interest by creating a cohesive society and sustainable global economy, where the labor, markets and communities can function better based on ethically correct business practices.
CSR has proved to be the best way to build relationships with the customers. Having a CSR policy can impact the buying decisions of consumers and make them loyal to your brand. There were some incidents where customers were willing to pay more than the usual price for a product when they were informed that a portion of the profit is going to a worthy cause. When corporations stand to support a charitable cause they are viewed positively by the community which in turn boosts their sales.
When CSR policy is incorporated with the company’s business model it attracts positive publicity, wins the trust and loyalty of the consumers, builds a long-term relationship with the customers and communities, improves the sales, and therefore, boosts the financial success.
Companies with CSR policies stand out from their competition because building good relationships with customers and their neighborhoods have helped them to build their unique brand image. McDonald’s is a leading global restaurant chain to succeed with its CSR programmes. McDonald’s currently has 30,000 chains in more than 100 countries.
The company began to provide nutritional information on its products’ packaging for their customers’ benefits in 2006. McDonald’s CSR strategy is about following ethical values every day, taking action wherever it is needed, maintaining healthy communication lines with shareholders and customers and achieving skyrocketing success. McDonald’s has focused on doing the right thing from its beginning, and today the consumers value this restaurant chain and trust the brand and its product.
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CSR is an innovative factor of business or we may call it the spark of the business that revolves around aggressive concepts and theories which helps the business to progress in the corporate world by benefitting the social, economic, educational, and ecological domains of the country. A business can grow with or without social responsibility, but doing well for others allows a business to reap long term rewards for itself.