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The Business of… Corporate Social Responsibility
When corporate cash meets social responsibility, it’s a win-win opportunity for investors, consumers, and societies. Pity it doesn’t always work out that way.
June 2, 2010 5:42 by Katherine Azmeh
What is CSR?
Corporate Social Responsibility, CSR, has generated a lot of buzz in recent years. Brainy academic-types define it as “the responsibilities corporations have to the societies within which they are based and operate. … incorporating their needs and values within the strategic and day-to-day decision-making process.”
On a more personal level, CSR holds that businesses have social and community responsibilities, alongside their profit motive. Example: over the weekend, One of Kipp’s team booked an appointment with a salon. After nearly an hour in the stylist’s chair, the young woman doing her nails leaned over and whispered, “We don’t get a day off.” Confused, Kipp asked, “Isn’t the salon closed on Mondays?” to which she replied, “Yes, but the owners make us work in their home that day.”
If the salon were a corporation, and Kipp were a potential shareholder, the employee’s revelation would scream disregard for fair labor practices, human rights, social justice. If Kipp were interested in investing money with corporations that had demonstrated a strong track record of CSR, this salon would not make the cut.
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