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Corporate Social Responsibility in the past few decades has intrigued not only the scholars but the practitioners as well. It is a concept whereby companies decide voluntarily to contribute towards a better society and a cleaner environment. Companies consider themselves as an integral part of the society and act in a socially responsible way. CSR activities are now viewed as a major part of the business strategy to minimize the business risks linked to uncertainty.
Corporate Social Responsibility was introduced in 1990’s as a new thrill in the corporate world.
Since then, many diverse career opportunities have been developed in this field. The term CSR can be defined to know how the companies work keeping in view the social, ethical and environmental factors.
CSR activities are all about accepting the issues of the marketplace, workplace, and the society into the basic business policies and strategies.There are customers who buy products from a reputed organization and the investors who lend money to the organizations with an excellent record. There are also firms who invest in the training of the employees which will benefit the local communities as well. All these activities are a part of the corporate social responsibility of the organization.
Consumers are very inquisitive these days. They want to know all about their product like information about from where and how the goods are produced and whether it is in any way harmful to the environment or not. The manager can only focus on making the policies and strategy for the business. He will only do the work at the top level. Employees are to be assigned to the work customers want to know.
Most of the MNCs have a specific department assigned for CSR activities. In many companies, the CSR wing works under the Human Resource or the Environment Department. They recruit professionals who have earlier worked in the fields of Social work, rural development, worker unions and other departments to take and manage the CSR activities of the corporate. It is observed that the companies whose operations directly impact the nature of mining, manufacturing, power generations etc have CSR wing very active to tackle the grievances of a nearby population and engage the stakeholders.
Due to the diversity within this area, opportunities exist within the private, public and voluntary sectors. There is no particular and typical qualification to enter into this field and direct experience is of less importance as this field is relatively new.
There is a huge career opportunity in Corporate Social Responsibility. An employee must possess following skills and talent to be in this field:
He should have leadership quality and good communication skill is necessary.
Must be a champion outside the corporate social responsibility.
Should know exactly what does CSR mean and how it works.
Should understand the environmental issues and have a good conscience.
Should have the capability to be involved in the business both internally and externally.
Should cover the basics of the organization.
Should have the required business skills like decision-making power, innovation, commercial awareness, team working and integrity.
People skills like developing and helping others, political awareness, and open-mindedness.
If a person has the above skills he/she can easily get a successful career in this sector. Most of the CSR jobs are done by NGOs having links with large corporations. One can get some CSR experience by doing social work or interning and volunteering in CSR projects.
Creating Shared Value (CSV) is often used interchangeably with the term Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). But there is a difference between both the terms. To understand both the terms let us first know the meanings of both.
Value means ‘creating worth’, so by this term, it is easy to understand that Creating Shared Value means sharing of the personal values earned in an organization with the community. This is done when the community is in need of help.
The organization provides the community with the resources for charitable causes which would have been used to maximize its profits. This means that the company decides to forgo its profit just for the interest of the community.
This is because annotating the societal issues can directly work in the company’s own interest. This is because by doing CSV the company gains reputation and popularity among the members of the society.
On the other hand, the effect is that the product or service sales of the company go up and leads to profit for the organization. Hence, Creating Shared Value can be considered as an expansion of the concept of Corporate Social Responsibility.
In shared value, issues are recognized on the basis of hard-headed analysis of how a company’s strategies, vision, and mission intersect with the societal needs. In other words, it is a strategy to develop future markets while strengthening the financial and economic needs of the business. It also develops the marketplace.
On the other hand, Corporate Social Responsibility means activities of an organization which benefits both the business and the community as a whole. The activities of the business (the past, present or future) should not give a negative outcome on the community.
The interest of the stakeholders, community, and the environment should be kept in mind while performing various functions of the organization.In some cases, an organization has to overcome the challenges of changing the mindset of a customer associated with CSR activities and contribute positively to the growth of the business as well as the community. CSR is directly related to activities of the organization which helps in attaining long-term sustainability while benefitting the community at large.
The driving forces behind CSR and CSV are quite similar. They include globalization, power, and influence of business corporations, growing access to education and information, growing awareness of environmental issues, a spread of corporate scandals and public distrust.
By incorporating CSV and CSR in the business plan, shareholder value increases. Creation of brand value and reputation among the people takes place.
For example in the English movie, “Two week’s notice” the Wayde enterprise was a giant corporation which was going to knock down the community center to establish a new mall in its place.
However, in the end, we see that both the mall and the community center are built together which leads to a lot of appreciation and popularity for the Wayde enterprise.
The news gets a lot of coverage by many news channels and the brand value increases drastically because of this act.
Creative Shared value is an influencing concept that might prompt the companies to act and think differently towards the environment and the social issues. By using the CSV framework a company can start approaching business in an easy and straightforward manner.
An organization can use these concepts to expand existing markets and can access new markets through a way of innovation. This can also help in cost saving through economies of scale.
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