Zoyani introduces Its 'You Shop, We Donate' Campaign
as a part of Corporate social responsibility (CSR)
Corporate social responsibility is a business model by which companies make a concerted effort to operate in ways that enhance rather than degrade society and the environment. CSR helps both improve various aspects of society as well as promote a positive brand image of companies.
Corporate responsibility programs are also a great way to raise morale in the workplace. CSRs are often broken into four categories: environmental impacts, ethical responsibility, philanthropic endeavors, and financial responsibilities.
To engage in CSR means that, in the ordinary course of business, a company is operating in ways that enhance society and the environment instead of contributing negatively to them. For a company to be socially responsible, it first needs to be accountable to itself and its shareholders. Companies that adopt CSR programs have often grown their business to the point where they can give back to society. Thus, CSR is typically a strategy that's implemented by large corporations. After all, the more visible and successful a corporation is, the more responsibility it has to set standards of ethical behavior for its peers, competition, and industry.
Small and midsize businesses also create social responsibility programs, although their initiatives are rarely as well-publicized as those of larger corporations.
Environmental responsibility is the pillar of corporate social responsibility rooted in preserving mother nature. Through optimal operations and support of related causes, a company can ensure it leaves natural resources better than before its operations. Companies often pursue environmental stewardship through:
- Reducing pollution, waste, natural resource consumption, and emissions through its manufacturing process.
- Recycling goods and materials throughout its processes including promoting re-use practices with its customers.
- Offsetting negative impacts by replenishing natural resources or supporting causes that can help neutralize the company's impact. For example, a manufacturer that deforests trees may commit to planting the same amount or more.
- Distributing goods consciously by choosing methods that have the least impact on emissions and pollution.
- Creating product lines that enhance these values. For example, a company that offers a gas lawnmower may design an electric lawnmower.
Ethical responsibility is the pillar of corporate social responsibility rooted in acting in a fair, ethical manner. Companies often set their own standards, though external forces or demands by clients may shape ethical goals. Instances of ethical responsibility include:
- Fair treatment across all types of customers regardless of age, race, culture, or sexual orientation.
- Positive treatment of all employees including favorable pay and benefits in excess of mandated minimums. This includes fair employment consideration for all individuals regardless of personal differences.
- Expansion of vendor use to utilize different suppliers of different races, genders, Veteran statuses, or economic statuses.
- Honest disclosure of operating concerns to investors in a timely and respectful manner. Though not always mandated, a company may choose to manage its relationship with external stakeholders beyond what is legally required.
- Philanthropic responsibility is the pillar of corporate social responsibility that challenges how a company acts and how it contributes to society. In its simplest form, philanthropic responsibility refers to how a company spends its resources to make the world a better place. This includes:
- Whether a company donates profit to charities or causes it believes in.
- Whether a company only enters into transactions with suppliers or vendors that align with the company philanthropically.
- Whether a company supports employee philanthropic endeavors through time off or matching contributions.
- Whether a company sponsors fundraising events or has a presence in the community for related events.
Financial responsibility is the pillar of corporate social responsibility that ties together the three areas above. A company make plans to be more environmentally, ethically, and philanthropically focused; however, the company must back these plans through financial investments of programs, donations, or product research. This includes spending on:
- Research and development for new products that encourage sustainability.
- Recruiting different types of talent to ensure a diverse workforce.
- Initiatives that train employees on DEI, social awareness, or environmental concerns.
- Processes that might be more expensive but yield greater CSR results.
- Ensuring transparent and timely financial reporting including external audits.
Some corporate social responsibility models replace financial responsibility with a sense of volunteerism. Otherwise, most models still include environmental, ethical, and philanthropic as types of CSR.
Benefits of Corporate Social Responsibility
As important as CSR is for the community, it is equally valuable for a company. CSR activities can help forge a stronger bond between employees and corporations, boost morale, and aid both employees and employers in feeling more connected to the world around them. Aside from the positive impacts to the planet, here are some additional reasons businesses pursue corporate social responsibility.
According to a study published in the Journal of Consumer Psychology, consumers are more likely to act favorably towards a company that has acted to benefit its customers as opposed to companies that have demonstrated an ability to deliver quality products. Customers are increasingly becoming more aware of the impacts companies can have on their community, and many now base purchasing decisions on the CSR aspect of a business. As a company engages more in CSR, they are more likely to receive favorable brand recognition.
In a study by Boston Consulting Group, companies that are considered leaders in environmental, social, or governance matters had an 11% valuation premium over their competitors. For companies looking to get an edge and outperform the market, enacting CSR strategies tends to positively impact how investors feel about an organization and how they view the worth of the company.
Employee Engagement In yet another study by professionals from Texas A&M, Temple, and the University of Minnesota, it would found that CSR-related values that align firms and employees serve as non-financial job benefits that strengthen employee retention.5 Works are more likely to stick around a company that they believe in. This in turn reduces employee turnover, disgruntled workers, and the total cost of the new employee.
Consider adverse activities such as discrimination against employee groups, disregard for natural resources, or unethical use of company funds. This type of activity is more likely to lead to lawsuits,litigation, or legal proceeds where the company may be negatively impacted financially and be captured in headline news. By adhering to CSR practices, companies can mitigate risk by avoiding troubling situations and complying with favorable activities.
CSR strategies may be difficult to strategically assess because not all benefits may be financially translatable back to the company. For example, it might be very difficult to assess the positive impact to a company's brand image that planting 1 million trees may have.
This is where business journalism comes in picture. Journalists who work in this branch are classed as "business journalists". Their main task is to gather information about current events as they related to business. They may also cover processes, trends, consequences, and important people, in business and disseminate their work through all types of mass media. Business journalism is the part of journalism that tracks, records, analyzes and interprets the business, economic and financial activities and changes that take place in societies. Topics widely cover the entire purview of all commercial activities related to the economy.
This area of journalism provides news and feature articles about people, places and issues related to the business sector. Most newspapers, magazines, radio, and television-news shows include a business segment. Detailed and in-depth business journalism may appear in publications, radio, and television channels dedicated specifically to business and financial journalism.