Corporate social responsibility is, at its core, the actions a company takes to improve the world around them. Often, corporate social responsibility is not tied to profit; instead, it is done with the intention of keeping strong morals at the center of a company. Although anything that betters the community can be considered corporate social responsibility, let’s take a look at some specific examples of this concept.
Where a company sources materials for its products may seem trivial to some. However, not every country operates the way the US does, which means many people can be exploited around the world due to unfair labor policies, and even slavery. Buying materials from ethical sources means ensuring the people making those materials are treated well. For example, many local coffee shops source their beans from ethical plantations that offer better working conditions and pay to their employees. Although more companies should strive to source ethically, it is also important to remember that ethical sources still often have a long way to go.
Paying Livable Wages
Livable wages are often a hot-button issue, but companies who are committed to corporate social responsibility should seriously consider paying their employees more. Companies who pay their employees a livable wage will have happier employees who, on average, want to come into work more often and will contribute more to a team. Although times are tough and pay raises are not always possible, the closer a company can get to paying a living wage to all employees, the more everyone will benefit.
Saving The Environment
Businesses are the biggest offenders when it comes to environmental pollutants. Runoff from manufacturing, carbon emissions, and dumping waste are all negatively affecting the earth. Businesses that want to be socially responsible will find ways to lower their impact on the environment. For example, Etsy is the first e-commerce site to offset 100% of its carbon emissions from shipping. If more companies made similar pledges, the environment would be healthier, creating a better world for everyone.
Charitable Giving And Volunteering
Finally, companies should consider supporting a charitable organization, whether by giving to charity, volunteering, or both. Many companies allow for a volunteer day off, which encourages employees to spend one day per year helping an organization of their choice. Other companies may close the business for a day and have the entire team work together for a cause. Holding food drives, fundraisers, and other charitable activities can also help tremendously.
There are numerous ways that a company can engage in corporate social responsibility, and the options above are just a few. As a rule of thumb, if an action positively impacts all people, regardless of revenue generated or lost, it is a socially responsible action.