As COVID-19 continues to disrupt the lives of many across the globe — and as social, economic, and political events continue to pose challenges to our nation — the need for more corporate social responsibility (CSR) is becoming apparent each day.
While CSR is not a new term, the uncertainties posed by our nation’s current climate and economic turmoil are causing consumers to place even more pressure on corporations, holding them accountable for their everyday actions and calling on them to step up and create tangible solutions that build influence and drive lasting change.
In a recent Forbes article on CSR, Karen B. Moore, founder, and CEO of Moore, outlines three characteristics companies must adopt to be more impactful and successful in their business.
Act as a problem solver
To display corporate social responsibility, companies must think of ways to create long-term impact.
We all have experienced countless times companies have encouraged or have organized company-wide philanthropy or volunteer days where employees donate to a particular cause or feed the homeless during the holidays. With the latest events surrounding racial injustice and police brutality, many companies channeled their support through philanthropic funding to various organizations in support of Black communities, along with the creation of sensitively crafted messages and responses to the Movement.
Moore argues that companies must do more than just check the box: they must take their efforts up a notch and find long-term solutions such as alleviating poverty and bridging the gap for Blacks and minorities in America to include racial and workforce equality.
Be authentic and transparent
Companies must ensure that their beliefs and values align with corporate social responsibility. When a company’s beliefs and values do not align with CSR, consumers will find it difficult to trust the company and will avoid giving the company their business.
By creating CSR and sustainability reports, companies can build trust among internal and external stakeholders including consumers, and can create new meaning in the relationships, communications, and impact between the company and society.
Encourage employee-led engagement
As companies continue to enhance and modify workplace culture, companies must continue to show appreciation and loyalty to employees by giving them a voice and a platform to do impactful work.
Employees want to work for a company that takes a stance on important societal and economic issues and want to work for a company that allows them the flexibility to make a difference, not only for the company but for society as a whole.
By regularly allowing employees to voice their opinions and identify issue areas that are important to them, companies can then determine which of those issue areas align with the company’s beliefs and values. They can then create opportunities for employees to lead and drive social change inside and outside of the company.
With all of the challenges this year that Americans have and continue to face, Moore reminds us, “People will appreciate and remember companies that stepped up to lead in 2020 and beyond.”