Can Corporate Social Responsibility help any business?

So what is CSR – There are many definitions but most will point to the same facts, it is how your business integrates, develops and improves the community and environment in which it operates.  It can involve a range of activities from partnerships with local communities and charities to environmental protection and sustainability. 

Advances in social media and marketing mean that there is now more information available about your business (or your competitors business) online, which can be accessed at the push of a button.  When someone is sourcing a supplier they instinctively want to understand a little more about the business they are reviewing, we all read reviews before a purchase, don’t we?

So what approaches are available – one of the most popular approaches is the financial donation to charitable organisations, however admirable this can sometimes be deemed as more of a marketing stunt rather than something that helps develop and improve the community.  Other methods include:

  1. Using less energy and / or fuel
  2. Being involved in recycling or disposal programmes 
  3. Taking part in community and charity projects
  4. Giving your expertise, which may lie in accounting, baking or magic tricks – it doesn’t matter – someone somewhere will be appreciative of your skills

So how can a successful CSR policy help your business?, 

It is important to stress that companies should undertake CSR for the right reasons and though positive CSR can enhance your reputation it can be argued that you are only doing it for this reason. 

“Be careful to choose events that not only benefit the cause but your clients, your staff and other people you wish to connect with.” And with this will come the secondary benefits of:-

  1. Enhanced reputation of your business
  2. Enhanced relationships with clients, suppliers and communities
  3. Save money on energy and operating costs
  4. Differentiate yourself from your competitors
  5. Generate positive publicity and media opportunities