Corporate social responsibility is a popular topic in today’s work culture due to the evolution of social media and customer awareness of products and services. Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is known as initiatives to assess and take responsibility for the company’s effects on environmental and social wellbeing. It generally applies to efforts that go beyond what may be required by regulations and environmental groups. It is important to practice CSR because it influences customer-purchasing decisions and is critical to employee recruitment especially within the younger workforce. If employees are engaged in CSR they will encourage others to follow suit and they could possibly start their own initiatives throughout the business.
Here are a few examples of how business owners/ managers can encourage CSR within the workplace:
Create environmentally friendly business practices such as recycling, using recycled/energy saving sources within the office (FSC paper, energy saving bulbs), making products more durable/recyclable, and use recycled or renewable sources in manufacturing products. You should encourage buy in and participation from employees as well as entice them to bring new ideas to the table. This ensures the business operates in an environmentally responsible manner and shows respect and care about the eco-system.
Encouraging your employees to get involved in various charity initiatives such as participating in local fundraisers or hosting your own corporate charity annual event. By listening and interacting with staff you can find out what charities are important to them, their interests and strengths along with any issues that could be affecting them personally. This can assist in the process of selecting a charity to fundraise for with full cooperation from staff. This creates a community feeling within your organizations and can increase engagement and satisfaction of your employees. It also shows commitment to social responsibility in giving back to the community and helping people and causes in need.
Learn about your employees’ values and beliefs and assist in matching them with projects or tasks that can create meaning and a sense of purpose for your employees. This shows that the business is responsible, committed and cares about employees and wants them to succeed.
Create and promote your business code of ethics among your employees and find ways to encourage the behaviour within the workplace. This could be by publishing the code of ethics in common areas and reinforcing them through performance metrics. If you don’t currently have a code of ethics you should create one that includes ethical operating practices, accountability, transparency, dealing with conflict, diversity and social media ethics (in and out of work.) The business should also look at creating strategies that can assist with conflict resolution and promoting diversification within the workforce. When the policies are created, educate employees on the standards and promote them to your consumers building on trust and creating a vision for the company.
Create a viable corporate responsibility strategy for your business that is linked to company core purpose, customers, employees, related issues as well as sustainability. This assists with planning and focusing on specific priorities as well as measuring success against projected benchmarks.
Planning and implementing a strategy and action plan that helps your business operate economically, socially and environmentally responsibly is important in recruiting and retaining quality employees, establishing customer trust and loyalty and promoting business success.
For more information on creating a Corporate Responsibility Strategy, contact us at 705.493.4525 or [email protected].
What practices and action steps has your business or workplace implemented towards fostering corporate social responsibility?