How Important is Corporate Social Responsibility: And Why 1 or 2 Corporations Should Take It Seriously

How Important is Corporate Social Responsibility: And Why 1 or 2 Corporations Should Take It Seriously

Corporate Social Responsibility, often shortened as “CSR”, is a form of taking responsibility by international private corporations which aims to contribute to societal goals. It is done when corporations engage in, supporting, and volunteering in an ethically-oriented practices. During corporate social responsibility, companies integrate social and environmental concerns in their business operations and interactions with their stakeholders. The term “corporate greed” is getting popular lately, and thus we need to take CSR more seriously.

What is Corporate Social Responsibility

Like we mentioned before, corporate social responsibility refers to to practices and policies undertaken by corporations that are intended to have a positive influence on the community around them. The key idea behind CSR is for corporations to pursue other pro-social objectives, in addition to maximizing profits. For example, how can a paper industry take responsibility after all the trees they cut to make papers. Most common practice of CSR includes minimizing environmental damage, promoting volunteerism, and donating to charity.

Speaking of responsible operation of a paper company, we have: Sustainable Operation of a Paper Company: How They Maintain Responsible for the 12th SDG.

Corporate social responsibility helps a company be socially accountable to itself, their stakeholders, and the public. By practicing CSR, corporations  helps both society and their own brand image, not only good for society, it is good for the company too. CSR can help companies to forge a stronger bond between employees and corporations, boost morale, and help both employees and employers feel more connected with the world around them. CSR programs were mostly done by large companies which they’re wealthy enough to give back to society.

Starbucks has been known for their remarkable practice of corporate social responsibility committed to sustainability and welfare of the community. According to Starbuck’s 2020 Global Social Impact Report, their practice of CSR include reaching 100% of ethically sourced coffee, creating a global network of coffee farmers and providing them 100 million trees by 2025. Starbucks pioneered green building throughout it’s branches, contributing millions of hours in community service, and providing generous college programs for its employees.

Starbucks, serving good coffee and remarkable corporate social responsibility

Photo is taken from: DIG Farm
Starbucks, serving good coffee and remarkable corporate social responsibility
Photo is taken from: DIG Farm

The 2020 report also mentioned how Starbucks planned to react to the COVID-19 pandemic. Starbucks reacted by prioritizing the health of it’s customers and employees, supporting health and government officials in their attempts to mitigate the effects of the pandemic, and showing up for communities through responsible and positive actions. For 2021, they had this ambitious corporate social responsibility plan where they will hire 5,000 veterans and 10,000 refugees, while reducing the environmental impact of it’s cups.

Why They Should Take Corporate Social Responsibility More Seriously

During this pandemic, virus was not the one that cause harm to the economy, but it was corporate greed, that prolong the end of COVID-19. Like for example, some companies were forcing their employees to come and work at the office instead of working from home, this will eliminate employee’s chances to be safe from the virus. Companies who implement corporate social responsibility could be more responsible in managing their workers. Properly implementing CSR could contribute to the virus prevention, corporate greed prevails however.

Corporate greed, what's holding back corporate social responsibility

Image is taken from: Labor 411
Corporate greed, what’s holding back corporate social responsibility
Image is taken from: Labor 411

Somehow, these greedy corporate couldn’t grasp the idea that customers will be more likely to do business with brands that they perceive to be more ethical, where corporate social responsibility could possibly achieve that. CSR activities can be an important component of corporate public relations and image branding. One case, but quite unlikely, some company founders are also motivated to engage in CSR due to their personal convictions. Either way, CSR could benefit both parties with positive result, so what’s stopping us from doing it.

Corporate social responsibility movements has an impact on several domains, environment for example. Many companies should have taken steps to improve the environmental sustainability of their operations, through measures such as installing renewable energy sources or purchasing carbon offsets. In terms of employee management, efforts should have also been taken to eliminate reliance on unethical labor practices, such as unreasonable hours, unreasonable workload, low salary, and even child labor.

We did mentioned that most of the companies that conduct corporate social responsibility were large corporations that capable enough to give back to society. However, small businesses could participate in CSR too, through smaller-scale programs such as donating to local charities and sponsoring local events, everyone starts small after all. Just remember that CSR initiatives should be true to a company’s values and message, and never be just for publicity. CSR shouldn’t be just a business, trend but rather a long-term plan that benefit society.

Source(s): Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), By Jason Fernando, September 4th 2021

The importance of corporate social responsibility to society, By Tim Vaughan, April 28th, 2021

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