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The Pros and Cons of Corporate Social Responsibility, Article Critique Example

Pages: 2

Words: 686

Article Critique

Corporate social responsibility is a highly controversial and strongly debated topic among the business community. In the recent years, stakeholders have been given more attention to CSR due to the expectations of the consumers. Often a business is rated not only on how well they do business or their product but on how well they fulfill their corporate social responsibility. Many have grown to believe that it is a responsibility of all businesses to give back to their communities in some way or another. It is not limited to environmental considerations; it includes making a visible contribution of some type. Corporate social responsibility has been a growing concern for stakeholders in the recent years because it requires them to make a decision that can ultimately affect their bottom line.

As a CEO, my company would not give a significant portion of the corporate budget to CSR. The company would participate in some CSR; however, it would not take away from the earnings of employees or shares for the stakeholders. There is a balance that needs to be considered regarding what is right for each company. The article reviewed provided different examples for each side of the debate. Is CSR a necessary consideration for our business? Are we taking away from our employees to give to the customers? There are many factors that need to be weighed in making the decision as to whether CSR is an important business practice.

The article presented both sides of the argument for and against CSR. Therefore, it is easy to agree with their findings. One of the largest companies in the world in Apple. Apple Inc.’s Steve Jobs never participated in CSR. “He believed that Apple should pass that value on to their customers, shareholders, and employees, and let them decide where that money should go” (Rogers, 2015). The position of Apple was supported by others who believe that good business practices are a form of CSR. Milton Friedman took a stand over thirty years ago stating “There is one and only one social responsibility of business – to use its resources and engage in activities designed to increase profits” (McShane & Von Glinow, 2013). Business has evolved drastically over the past thirty years, and Friedman’s position may no longer be the right mentality for businesses.

The article also promotes the idea that CSR is not only favorable to the community but to the employees as well. Hudson Bay Co. takes pride in their CSR. “Our company’s position on corporate social responsibility and the environment is a significant part of what job candidates find attractive about HBC” (McShane & Von Glinow, 2013). There is something to be said about a company who will consider what they can do for their community instead of worrying about how much they can increase the bottom line. “Doing the best you can for stockholders is paramount. But that alone doesn’t always lead to the right decision. Doing the right thing is good for business” (Rogers, 2015). Each individual business needs to decide what the right thing is for them and develop their CSR around that.

CSR is an important part of the business. How much a company participates is dependent upon their mission and values; however, it is important to establish some type of CSR to give back to the community in which they operate. Companies who do not feel that CSR is important were established during a different time of business. The article clearly uses Phil Knight of Nike and Steve Jobs of Apple, who felt that CSR was not a practice for their company. These leaders also led the business decades ago when CSR was not a common practice. The expectation for CSR is growing, and large companies like Apple and Nike may not find the future success if they do not establish some form of CSR. Corporate social responsibility is an important business practice, and its impact should not be underestimated by any business.

References

McShane, S. L. & Von Glinow, M. A. (2013). Organizational Behavior (6th ed). New York, NY. McGraw-Hill/Irwin.

Rogers, F. (2015). The pros and cons of corporate social responsibility. Baylor Business Review, 33(2), 22-25.

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