Today’s consumers, in many cases, are becoming increasingly aware of and passionate about social issues and how they impact the world around them. Many people seem now to feel that the needs of current and future generations require the development of standards to protect a wide variety of social values. For this reason, many businesses and other organizations have chosen to implement a CSR, or Corporate Social Responsibility, plan. If your organization does not yet have one, you should strongly consider developing one in 2013.
What is the Point of a CSR Plan?
The primary reason to implement a CSR plan, of course, comes down to simple right and wrong. A thoughtfully constructed CSR plan can help ensure that all members of an organization are on the same page regarding ethical behavior in all situations. It is worth noting as well, however, that a CSR can have a more immediately practical impact. After all, a nonprofit, business or other organization risks tarnishing its reputation and brand value if they engage in questionable behavior or fail to act ethically. Protecting them can help ensure a company’s long-term success.
What Does a CSR Plan Involve?
Developing an optimal CSR plan for your company means that you recognize that the decisions you make impact more than just the people working there. Therefore, the CSR plan development process should involve other parties who hold a stake in the company’s actions, including nearby residents and customers or supporters, as well as executives and employees. In the long run, the result will be improved social decisions and environmental protection along with an elevated reputation in the community (and potentially even a resulting boost in donations for a nonprofit, or sales for a business).
Of course, many companies have chosen to implement CSR plans already. If yours is not one of them, you may well be wondering why you should bother doing so now if day-to-day operations seem to run fine without a CSR plan. To be sure, the general principles of holding your company to a high standard of ethical behavior and setting an example for others in the community are not new. What is new, however, is the blazing speed with which information of all types can spread around the world. 2013 will see social media usage – especially via mobile devices – continue to skyrocket.
What this means to you is that the actions your company takes and the decisions it makes will be publicized, analyzed and discussed incredibly quickly. There are no secrets in today’s world. Rather than hoping your company does not get caught making a mistake, choose instead to implement a corporate social responsibility plan that ensures you do not even give the impression of having something to hide.
If you already have a CSR plan, tell us below how you decided what points to include. If you do not have one yet, what will you include?