CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

We’ve seen the corporate world evolve over time.
Years ago, making money was all that mattered.
Then, as the labor movement took hold, being a good employer was important.
Today, being a good corporate citizen has become critical to one’s reputation.
Business authors Archie Carroll and Ann Buckholtz define “corporate social responsibility” as “economic , legal, ethical and discretionary expectations that society has of organizations.”
As David Bohan, founder of Advertising, wrote in the Tennessean newspaper in May 2013, CSR must become part of a business plan, no matter the size of the business.
Companies must have a strong bottom line, but cannot get greedy. They must treat their employees, shareholders and customers well. They must show their communities at large that they are givers. They must act responsibly in everything they do.
To paraphrase S. Truett Cathy, founder of the Chik-fil-A sandwich chain: earn your money honestly, spend it wisely and give the rest of it away.
You earn your money honestly not just by avoiding illegal activity, but also by treating others as you would want to be treated. If someone works for you, help them be successful and pay them what they deserve. Don’t just pay them as little as you can get away with. If someone buys from you, bend over backward to make sure they are satisfied. In fact, give them more than they pay for. Don’t try to deceive them with inferior products.
If someone invests with you, make sure you do everything in your power to make that investment pay off. Don’t “cook the books” to make the company look better than it is. Don’t make money for yourself while your investors are losing money.
In short, make sure those around you are successful FIRST, then let success come to you.
If you operate in a community, be it a locale, a professional organization or a general citizenry, make sure you are making that community a better place. As a corporate citizen, you have the resources to give your community much of what it needs. You are also responsible to make sure your products are not damaging or polluting that community.
If you do the right things, and do things right, you will profit. If you focus on helping others, others will help you. If your bottom line is about helping others, you should see a nice bottom line for yourself.
Think of others first, and others will think of you. It’s not how much you get that is important, it’s how much you give.
If these ideas resonate with you, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau. You will learn how to help others in a big way, and reap rewards for your good deeds. As a corporate citizen, companies learn that selfless behavior ultimately yields the best results.
Peter

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