The moral compass on corporate social responsibility continues to evolve.
Let’s start with a basic premise: every organization, and in fact every individual, has the obligation to make the world a better place for our children and grandchildren to inherit.
It’s that simple.
It is also a huge responsibility. And it is one that great leaders who operate with Leadership Accountability recognize and understand.
From a corporate perspective, this is augmented by short-term responsibilities to four specific sets of stakeholders: customers, employees, shareholders, and the communities in which the organization operates.
Much like the racial segregation and marriage equality laws that have evolved in recent decades, the moral compass on corporate responsibility continues to evolve.
This progression is created by a combination of societal pressures, changing social values and mores, and an increasingly more knowledgeable and frustrated global population. Added to this combustible mix is an increasingly active citizenry that does not hesitate to punish or correct organizations deemed to be outside the boundaries of proper corporate citizenship.
We even see organizations themselves now taking stands against other organizations negatively impacting the world, for instance:
- Starbucks committing to 100% ethically sourced coffee and tea in a global program that aims to positively impact the lives and livelihoods of farmers and their communities.
- Intel committing to use minerals from “conflict-free” sources in the Congo so that their purchases of such minerals do not fund the militant violence and human-rights atrocities in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
- Grocery chain NTUC FairPrice in Singapore removing products from its shelves made by the company suspected of being involved in the burning of forests in Indonesia which caused an unhealthy smoke haze to descend upon Singapore for weeks.
There can be little doubt, therefore, that Corporate Responsibility is one of the pillars of sustainable success for any organization or corporate entity.
And there is no doubt that any leader displaying Leadership Accountability knows the bottom-line importance of corporate social responsibility.
The key word here is sustainable.
Please share your thoughts on corporate responsibility and leadership accountability below in the comments box.
This article is excerpted from my book Great Leadership Words of Wisdom, which is available on Amazon in both paperback and Kindle formats and has over 1000 quotes on leadership from global business leaders, statesmen, athletes, coaches, sages, and philosophers.