Leadership in CCSR - Embracing new opportunities

Oct 1, 2012 7:30 AM ET

Social Networks and the Internet, with instant communications and access to a vast amount of information, have empowered people around the world to be aware of the needs of the individual, community and the environment. Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) are all about empowering a way of life for people to manage their economic welfare by being environment friendly and attentive to the social needs of individuals in the community.

CSR applies the same principles that an individual must take to the corporation. It is an overarching framework that embodies the key principles of sustainability stating that in today’s environment, in order for a corporation to be regarded successful, that in addition to the traditional ongoing focus on the economics & operational aspects of the company or bottom line, it must pay attention to the environment in which its operates as well as to the social aspects of the people it touches (employees, customers, suppliers and the public at large). This leads to the concept of the triple bottom line: profit, people and planet.   

 The above definitions are somewhat lacking. This creates the opportunity to expand the scope of these definitions primarily in two areas:

  • Embrace the principle of integrated CSR involving all constituents: Community, Business Community, Social Enterprises serving the Community, Academia, Youth and Governments.
  • Expand the definition of CSR by adding the Community to the term to create CCSR by including new Social Innovation Organizations, Social Enterprises and Youth Social Entrepreneurs 

Aside from providing employment opportunities to the community, it is vital for a local business to be integrated with and offer value-add to the socio-economic fabric of the community at large. Proper integration within the community is paramount to the overall success of a business and how it is being perceived by the local population. Each corporation has to take steps to become a catalyst to bringing together diverse groups and organizations in the community to work together and create and foster an environment of sustainability and innovation within their workforce. 

In order to maintain a leadership position in CCSR, each organization must continue to evolve and identify innovative ways to transform itself and deliver on its commitment to meet the needs of its stakeholders on all its objectives. One optimal way to achieve some of its goals is by following the CCSR principles through the integration with the community. An organization needs to develop and implement a sustainability strategy and identify the tactical steps required to execute the strategy. 

Furthermore, each organization must strive to take a leadership role to creating an ecosystem/environment to foster sustainability, engender a spirit of achievement in individual’s professional evolution and consistently share success with the community at large in social, economic and environmental aspects.