In our ever changing times, it is not enough for shops, businesses and services to just provide a product. It is not enough for the same businesses, shops and services to just be good at what they do without thought for anything other than making a nice healthy profit. In our global village, we all have to show social responsibility for each other, and for our planet, and the best companies are those that are prepared to pay it forward, by either investing in their workers, or helping their local or wider community through charitable and philanthropic deeds and projects. This is corporate social responsibility and we are seeing it on an ever wider scale in the business world.
Some businesses have long been supporting charities. River Island, for instance, has long donated out of season stock and overstock to the New Life birth defects charity that was actually founded in Cannock, very close to where I myself live. I have often featured brands that not only stock beautiful artisan products, but also have charitable trusts and foundations that they support, these include Mifuko, who have their own Wash and Grow project which is dedicated to recycling projects in Kenya. There are businesses who donate part of their profit to supporting good causes, and other businesses who have looked at their practices in order to make themselves more socially aware and responsible.
One brilliant idea that I personally love comes from Builder Depot. They have recently launched their Charitable Donations Programme which is dedicated to helping good causes and local projects that would benefit from a donation of building materials. This can enable good causes such as schools and hospitals, charitable organisations, local community projects, and even those linked to animal welfare and conservation, to apply for building materials to help them create a unique, useful space for the wider community.
At Builder Depot, we believe in big-hearted people that make our community grow and flourish. And to show our gratitude to those that care, we’re dedicating ourselves to your building, renovation and maintenance initiatives. Whether you are a school looking for woodworking tools or a charity needing construction supplies, we will endeavour to donate or provide discounted building materials to help you achieve your goals.
I’m sure you will agree that this is the very definition of paying it forward, giving something back that could make a whole lot of difference to a good many people.
So why is ‘Corporate Social Responsibility’ so important in our current climate? Why is it so crucial to be socially accountable to both stakeholders and the wider general public?
Happy Staff, Happy Workplace
At a more general level, workplaces that embrace corporate social responsibility are more likely to have a happier workforce, particularly if their projects also take in benefits, training and progression for their staff. These sorts of initiatives help businesses to retain their staff, and also attract new talent who are interested in something more than just workplace/career progression. In 2022, a survey by the National Environmental Education Foundation looked at the links between job satisfaction and environmental responsibility. They found:-
nearly 90% of employees engaged in their company’s sustainability work say it enhances their job satisfaction and overall feelings about their workplace.
It makes perfect sense that if you are concerned about the environment, net zero and our planet in general, you would feel much happier working for a company that also feels this way.
Doing good deeds and working with good practices can also have a really positive effect on your brand awareness. In the same way that there can be bad publicity for bad deeds, good practices can also lead to positive press coverage and public support which can actually win you new customers who may not necessarily have noticed you under other circumstances.
Improving our environment
Brands that embrace corporate social responsibility in regards to our environment can have far reaching rewards, particularly if these companies are multi nationals who could do as much harm as they could good. Having positive policies in regards to recycling, using sustainable materials and practices, energy saving and supporting local and national community projects can have an effect that can improve quality of life on this planet for many years.