Social Responsibility has been a major trend growing in the business world. Social Responsibility means to operate a business in a manner that meets or exceeds the ethical, legal, commercial, and public expectations that society has of business.(Schaffer and Dunn, pg 23) When thinking about social responsibility consumers, stakeholders, employees, and the environment that a business is placed in is a part of that responsibility. Stakeholders expect that businesses have an ethical standard that they follow that guides them in their decision making. (R.W. Griffin & R.J. Ebert, p.56 – p.87) They uphold business social responsibility by the decisions they choose to make regarding ethics, honesty running their business, and contributions.
As businesses gain their public’s trust they increase their prosperity within the community. However businesses should realize that the reasons why they have become a success are from the clients and the community supporting them. Businesses should strive for creating positive effects while decreasing the negative effects in their community. This paper presents an evaluation of Company Q in order to determine its attitude towards social responsibility to the not only their business but society as well.
In the case of evaluating Company Q’s attitude towards social responsibility the business decisions that the company has made have shown that the company is not being considerate of the environment they operate in. The company has easily proven they are more worried about maintaining profit they have gained than helping the environment that has help them accrue it.. As much as profits are important to any business to remain successful, being social responsible is equally important. The small food chain operates in a high crime metropolitan area, and out of loss of money has closed down two stores. This move could be interpreted as just the matter of not trusting the environment and closed the stores out of fear, or their treatment of customers due to the denial of request to carry organic food that is highly popular. The company was hesitant in fulfilling customer requests, when Company Q responded after years of request they stocked only a limited amount of healthy, organic options they sold at a high margin. Company Q denied the needs of the food banks that generally run on handouts from local vendors, to receive excess donations because of distrust of employees and loss of profit. The demonstrated lack of trust in their employee resulted in the lack of empathy towards donating to the needy. It seems that Company Q has a reserved attitude towards the obligation of what social responsibility entails of a business. This attitude could be negatively impacting their business and public reputation.
Company Q however can make several changes to their operation that could help improve their business attitude, employee, and customer relations. One of the first recommendations to make is to become more socially conscience; the company needs to put the society’s needs first. When they denied the request for donations to food banks, they not only harmed the welfare of needy individuals but could possibly have irreparably harmed the public reputation of their business. To fix the problem they could put on a food drive sponsored by their store chain, or set up a system to directly donate without the confusion of lost revenue or fraud. This will help the company become more social responsible and partake in the betterment of the community.
A second recommendation is for Company Q is striving for building better relations with their employees. When they demonstrated a lack of trust when denying food donations they proved that the management has a weak trust foundation between their employees. Management can build a better foundation by encouraging employees to volunteer within the communities they serve in. This not only helps with making employee more socially responsible, but more socially aware of the areas they serve in and the customers that frequent their stores. This helps builds back customer relations and building back up their store’s reputation to the public. While Company Q can also hope to gain more customers and increase profits in the long-run.
The last recommendation for Company Q is to review their financials. As they can tell from not only market data but years of customers’ request, healthy organic food options are increasingly popular to consumers. When choosing to place them in their stores they choose to represent a healthy lifestyle. Stockings these items can give the stores a significant boosts in profits and helps fulfill an ethical and moral obligation to the welfare of their patrons. It is recommended that they store create a smart business strategy that will allow for better market research on ways to save money, and seek ways for cost-conscious methods to advertise their choice of stocking healthy options.
If Company Q follows these recommendations, and makes changes to their business and managerial decisions they will help improve their attitude towards social responsibility. They will not only increase profits to their company, but also give back to the environment by invoking volunteerism within their company, employees, and their community. The will help foster the betterment of society by helping local charities, hosting sponsored food drives, and providing healthy food options.
Dunn, Craig P. Lance Schaffer. Part I. Corporate Responsibility and Related Terms. Retrieved from http://www.sagepub.com/upm-data/41167_1.pdf
Griffin, R. W. & Ebert, R. J. (2007). Bus 101 Introduction to Business, 2nd Custom Edition (8th ed.). Boston, Ma U.S.A. Pearson-Prentice Hall.