As a social entrepreneur, I create positive change in the community and society through my business Kaliráh Strategies. Kaliráh Strategies is a boutique firm that helps business enterprises as well as professional athletes and entertainers, who embrace social responsibility, to design and execute their social impact vision. One of the first questions that I always get when giving my 15-second elevator pitch is, “What is social responsibility?” Let me explain.
What is Social Responsibility?
Social Responsibility is the business practice of contributing to the well-being of society. Businesses that embrace social responsibility seek to make a difference in their communities. They do so by engaging in business practices and participating in activities that create a positive impact within and outside of their organization.
Big corporations as well as entrepreneurs are in the business of making money; however, as they make money, the premise of social responsibility asserts that businesses should also engage in ethical business practices as well as contribute to the communities where they reside and serve. Being a respectable stakeholder of the community and society as a business enterprise, therefore, is what social responsibility is all about. Businesses who embrace social responsibility recognize their role as leaders in and contributors to the community.
Why should business enterprises embrace social responsibility?
Business enterprises should embrace social responsibility because it is the right thing to do and it is good for business. Businesses that embrace social responsibility engage in ethical business practices as well as contribute to the community. Social responsibility, therefore, is an inside and outside game.
As businesses create pleasant work environments, engage in philanthropy, participate in and contribute to community activities, and practice environmental sustainability, they build their reputations and, consequently, gain the support and respect of the communities they serve. Social responsibility, therefore, builds the viability, credibility and visibility of business enterprises. Because it is good for the business and good for society, social responsibility has become an essential strategy for many businesses.
How will practicing social responsibility strengthen your business?
There are many reasons why you as a business enterprise or entrepreneur should embrace social responsibility. In fact, social responsibility should be a part of your business strategy. Embracing social responsibility will strengthen your company in multiple ways.
Attract and Retain Employees
Social responsibility will strengthen your company by enabling you to attract and retain employees. By promoting fair employment practices, championing diversity, equity and inclusion, creating safe work environments, and participating in ethical business practices, many talented individuals will want to work for you! Many people, especially millennials, want to work for companies that have values and treat them well. Moreover, having content, loyal employees slows down attrition and staff turnover.
Social responsibility strengthens your company by increasing your productivity. Because employee satisfaction and contentment is higher within companies that embrace social responsibility, employees are more inclined to produce more and better work. Happy employees makes happy business returns!
Generate Loyal Customers
Social responsibility strengthens companies by generating loyalty customers. Many customers want to do business with companies who give to social causes, do good in the community, engage in ethical business practices, and support environmental sustainability. In fact, research shows that people will pay more for a product or service when they know that the company is contributing to and doing great work in the community.
Embracing social responsibility also strengthens your company by attracting investors. Investors want to finance companies that have high ESG ratings (environmental, social, governance). These companies are less risky and challenging. In fact, companies with high ESG ratings tend to have better financial performance because they attract good employees, loyal customers and staunch investors.
Increase Community Engagement
By supporting social responsibility, your business will help to increase community engagement among citizens. By promoting and supporting community engagement activities among your employees such philanthropic campaigns, volunteerism, service, leadership roles in local as well as national organizations, and voting, you encourage more individuals to be civically engaged. These activities have an immense impact on the community because more people are involved in and contributing to its well-being.
Accept the challenge: Be a business/entrepreneur that embraces social responsibility!
As we can see, social responsibility benefits both the company and the community. Being a business enterprise or entrepreneur that embraces social responsibility is good for business and good for society. Accept the challenge and make social responsibility a part of your business strategy!
Stay tuned. In my next blog, I will explore the Principals and Practices of Social Responsibility.
A Project Management Professional (PMP), Ramona Houston, PhD, PMP, is Founder and Chief Strategist of Kaliráh Strategies, a boutique firm that helps business enterprises as well as professional athletes and entertainers, who embrace social responsibility, to design and execute their social impact vision. Ultimately, Kalirah Strategies enables clients to focus on what they do best—creating their legacy on the field, while Kaliráh Strategies creates their legacy off the field. Contact Dr. Houston to learn how she may support you or your organization.