You are! Everyone working is responsible for Social Responsibility in our global business economy. According to Milton Friedman, “The social responsibility of business is to increase its profits,” (As cited in Kinicki, 2009). At the end of the day, that’s the key factor in success for the company and the people in its community. Increasing profits.
Friedman further states: “The businessmen believe that they are defending free enterprise when they declaim that business is not concerned “merely” with profit but also with promoting desirable “social” ends; that business has a “social conscience” and takes seriously its responsibilities for providing employment, eliminating discrimination, avoiding pollution and whatever else may be the catchwords of the contemporary crop of reformers,” 1 (Friedman, 1970). Corporate jargon and PR does not seem to impress Mr. Friedman.
I agree with Friedman, if you stand to gain substantial profit from a particular geographical area, then you should re-invest a portion of that profit back into that same community. And if the shareholders start to cry; then remind them that their dividends increased by 25% in the last quarter due to their expanded market retrieved during a recent investment in a community project.
How does investing in Business Social Responsibility provide a return to key stakeholders?
When key stakeholders decide to re-invest some of the profits into social responsibility; it shows that they are growing in more than just profits. It means that they are growing in the human factor of business expansion. They have realized that by investing in the people that purchase their services or products; they stand to gain additional growth in their company. Therefore it is to their gain that they development a solid strategic plan for Corporate Social Responsibility (i.e. CSR). Maignan and colleagues’ said, “CSR can be defined as ‘the extent to which businesses meet the economic, legal, ethical, and discretionary responsibilities imposed on them by their stakeholders’ (as cited in Galbreath, 2010).
Jeremy Galbreath, Senior Lecture and published author from the Graduate School of Business, Curtin University of Technology in Western Australia, clearly stated that the way in which businesses will ensure their meeting social responsibility is by, “Insight into customer needs and general market trends is important to enacting strategies that meet their social responsibilities.” (as cited in Galbreath, 2010)
Clearing the way for CSR in the future
Undoubtedly the need for CSR is global. Today’s economy and its crash; opens the doors for investors to provide employees, patrons, and government agencies with their social involvement requirement. Will companies implement, carry through, and maintain their portion of responsibility. Who’s to say? We all hope so. For we know as a collective group; social responsibility is not only required, it’s needed.
IF your company needs a CSR plan; feel free to call upon us. Exceptions PR With A Purpose can help you establish your community giving back as a company.
Friedman, M. (1970) retrieved on May 23, 2010, zonecours.hec.ca/…/H2010-1-1889726.11a-FriedmanSRofBustoIncrsProfits.pdf
Galbreath, J. (2010). Drivers of Corporate Social Responsibility: The Role of Formal Strategic Planning and Firm Culture, British Journal of Management, Vol. 21, 511–525
Maignan, I. and O. C. Ferrell (2000). ‘Measuring corporate citizenship in two countries: the case of the United States and France’, Journal of Business Ethics, 23, pp. 283–297