There is a visible attention being paid towards social and environmental consequences of business and yet performance in this front is far from satisfactory. Common trait seen across companies is that social concern and business are seen as two independent responsibilities and often at loggerhead. As a consequence, companies lose focus of how social responsibility could have been integrated with the long term business outcomes. Businesses across the world are so obsessed with the immediacy of results that they cannot sight the vast opportunity that discharging of social responsibility holds for the long term sustainability of the organizations. As a result, based on the maturity of strategic thinking in the company, CSR is being implemented in one or more of the following ways as shown here:
CSR as Reactive strategy
CSR has in general been a reactive strategy for reviving drooping fortunes of the company by gaining the confidence of the communities in which they operate. The case of Shell in Nigeria and that of Nike in Asian countries are just two examples to quote. With such instances on the rise companies have started adopting a “proactive approach” analyzing the cost of not discharging the social responsibility and as a result do the bare minimum to pull on and thus minimizing their spending on this account. CSR is viewed by these companies as a cost and compulsion. This approach only obscures a business from identifying the real potential CSR holds with respect to their core business. Any complacence by such companies may result in the kind of corporate scandals that we are comming across today. Corporate misdeeds are indeed costly, if caught. CSR as Image building exercise
Efforts of companies to recover from the effects of not discharging social responsibility can broadly be classified as damage control exercise as far as their image is concerned. Here the businesses have their back against the...