Business social responsibility is a set of activities carried out by a company to meet informal expectations of a society that a business contribute to social well-being. It includes such things as charitable contributions, volunteer work and environmental responsibility programs. Socially responsible companies benefit from publicity, happy employees and loyal customers.
Publicity and Branding
Publicity is unpaid media exposure. While you shouldn't participate in adopt-a-highway or animal rescue programs solely to draw media attention, contributing actively in your communities often attracts it. Having your marketing department send out a press release or invite media coverage of your prominent social activities is perfectly acceptable as long as your actions are genuine. Forbes points out that businesses sometimes differentiate their brands from competitors through socially responsible behaviors or charitable giving. Your company could become known as the industry provider that supports local schools or allocates employee volunteer time to Habitat for Humanity.
Business social responsibility is sometimes included in recruitment campaigns, because some employees prefer to work for companies that are passionate about the environment or that support animal charities, for instance. Employees are typically happier and much more engaged in their workplaces when a business is involved in social responsibility, according to Forbes. Happier employees stick around, which saves you money, and they are normally more productive. Some employees are even willing to take a pay cut or accept lower compensation as a trade-off for working for a responsible business. And happy employees project the image you want your customers to see.
Employee volunteer programs, which include paid time to participate in civic activities, can generate publicity and increase employee satisfaction at the same time.
Borgen magazine notes that a business's active engagement in social activities attracts more customers. In the same way certain involvement resonates with workers, it can positively influence customers. Beauty salon Aveda has differentiated its brand from competitors through its energetic environmentalism, which includes a focus on sustainability. Because of its leadership in using and preserving natural resources, the company is a leader in its industry. Community leaders and citizens who don't necessarily patronize a business can still become vocal supporters if you operate in socially and morally acceptable ways.
Neil Kokemuller has been an active business, finance and education writer and content media website developer since 2007. He has been a college marketing professor since 2004. Kokemuller has additional professional experience in marketing, retail and small business. He holds a Master of Business Administration from Iowa State University.