What is a Corporation's Role in a Modern Society
The Bible tells us how Christians are to treat their neighbors. It directs believers to exemplify Christ to be effective. Christians are asked to support and honor all men. It is imperative for Christians to be a part of something that accomodates needs in their community. Matthew 5:16 says “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in Heaven.” Christian business owners can use their business to glorify God even when it is not explicitly mentioned in their strategy.
In modern businesses there is a tendency to measure corporate success by profit. Apple,General Electric, Amazon, and endless other companies are popular because they are profitable and they have a firm customer base. Profits are the major motive for shareholders to purchase stock but those same investors are also looking at the strength of the company to meet future needs of the customer base. Without customers a company has no profits and eventually withers into oblivion. The key seems to be the ability to balance profit and personal affiliation with the product.
What is the Role of Social Responsibility?
How can a CEO satisfy current shareholders monetary return and also build a foundation for customer appreciation in the community? Does satisfaction of the shareholders become the primary ingredient in solidifying the future of a company? There are currently many opinions about just how a business should operate. Graduate schools of business emphasize the profit margin as the primary determinant of success in the commercial sector of our society. Those same schools are now also also recognizing the significant role of a company's interaction with the needs of their customer's community.
Profits are not the primary basis for future success in any enterprise. According to the Research Managment Group ,a think tank organization whose focus is on the development ofmethods to maximize profits, discusses one of the overlooked aspects of corporate investment is community involvement. "When a company increases their social influence they become an intrinsic member of an acceptable resource for affilition and trust. " Customers have to be confident that a the business is adding to society and they are buying a product from a company that cares about their community.
I was a new business owner in a small Texas town and owned an aviation business located at the local airport. As a new business we quickly found there was a need to integrate our business with the local culture. The void between our business and the needs of the community resulted in a lack of financial support from the surrounding customer base. Our business was a new entity in a society already solidified in the use of familiar products and services". After prompting from the local Chamber of Commerce, we directed a campaign in the community to involve employees in the local culture, advertise how the products available in the business could contribute to the other ecomonic engines in the local area. The result was astounding. The business became profitable, recognized by the community as an accepted unit of the economy, and employer . The community involvement made the difference between success and failure for the business.
The Benefit of Helping the Community
Corporate social responsibility expands the interests of employees while gaining the attention of new shareholders. It offers an organization the chance to do something that will positively impact a community and increase market share. A Wall Street Journal article posted on January 24, 2019 that verifies the hypothesis:" CEO’s and executives who donate to community cause. The WSJ article provided the following statistical proof:
How do you measure success in terms of your company's societal impact?
Positive impact to the bottom line. 58%
Impact to employee retention 55%
Number of lives/communities positively ipacted. 55%
Number of geographic locations where we are 54%
making an impact
Impact on client acquisition /retention 52%
Amount of money donated 50%
CEO’s understand that consumers want to support brands that contribute to causes they care about. Corporate leaders who dedicate a portion of company revenue to something that benifits society are much more effective in producing long term profit.
Organizational Behavior Emerging Knowledge, Global Reality, Steven L. McShane, Mary Ann Von Glinow: McGraw-Hill , 2017 (7th Ed.).New York, NY:pp.16,86