Every corporation has its bit to do to give back to the community that pretty much makes it the success it is, even if their CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) initiative isn’t necessarily aimed directly at the community from which their core client base comes. So your company or business could be headquartered or have its plant stationed in a certain town or city, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that your CSR initiative will be directly servicing the community in and around that specific locale.
What exactly is CSR though and why is it such a seemingly important part of any organisation which is economically active?
Corporate Social Responsibility is basically just a responsibility assumed by an organisation, typically a corporate organisation, to redirect some of their profits to projects and initiatives that develop the community. The community spoken of is typically just comprised out of the customer base of that corporation, so to put it simply it’s really just a matter of giving back. The corporation’s success which comes with profit puts it in a position which gives them the power to help give back to and develop the community in ways that the community itself could never manage on its own.
It’s not even an issue of self organisation proving to be too difficult to master as a reason for the community not being able to develop itself in those areas which are otherwise targeted by CSR initiatives, but rather just about the financial muscle.
I think we should walk through an example of CSR in action on what is perhaps the biggest scale in existence. We’ll have a look at Google as an example for our case study (before its parent company became Alphabet).
Considering the business model Google has deployed with great success over the past couple of decades and a little more, there’s no doubt about the fact that the corporation itself has become a serious financial giant. It’s a behemoth to say the very least still and although its customer base as a collective has the financial muscle to fund useful projects such as Google Maps, there could have never been a way for this customer base collective to put the money together ourselves and commission for a project such as Google Maps to be developed.
Based on the usefulness of a platform such as Google Maps, along with the fact that it’s available for free use, there’s no doubt about the fact that it is an essential tool and service which needs to be available for free. It’s only giant corporations such as Google which can commission, fund and see through the development of projects such as these and that’s Corporate Social Responsibility in action. That is the epitome of CSR.
The intentions are not all pure and innocent however and it’s not purely a matter of just giving back. It’s absolutely fine though, but it’s mostly about how the corporation pushing its CSR initiative can gain something out of it, be it publicity or something like a tax break.
Either way, every corporation has a social responsibility of this kind.