For many years, business strategy has been dominated by profit maximisation and market share domination and today, these traditional notions still impact much of the weight of decision making. Yet the rise of the importance of stakeholder value and pressure from concerned consumers have thrust corporate social responsibility to the top of many modern business agendas.
Corporate social responsibility is concerned with the impact decisions have on its stakeholders, the public and the wider community. It can act as a self-regulating mechanism to hold organisations to account for their actions, this may relate to the treatment of staff, business ethics and commonly practices surrounding sustainability.
So why is this so important to modern business? With one-third of UK consumers stating they have stopped using a service due to environmental concerns, ignoring the carbon impact of decisions is not a sustainable solution in the medium term.
Businesses are adapting to find new means of bridging the gap between business strategy and ethical practice, yet many of the current solutions are not fit for purpose. All talk and no action policies, or ‘greenwashing’ refers to marketing and PR stunts related to sustainable business practice. In 2021, the UK Goverment published the Green Claims Code which sets out a criteria for businesses to follow before claiming they are sustainable- businesses have until 2022 to ensure their pledges are legitimate.
Here are our top tips to make a positive difference and in doing so, satisfy your stakeholders:
- Measure and quantify your emissions; start with the basics, identify where you are in the present so you can set attainable and achievable goals for the future
- Establish clear objectives; define SMART (Specific, Measurable, …etc.) goals for the future, engage with government guidelines and ensure your business is on track to be net zero carbon by 2050
- Engage with stakeholders and the wider community; give consumers the chance to make a positive impact on your organisation and help generate market leading innovations
- Work with staff to identify quick wins; engagement is key to implementing successful policies, employees often have great ideas on how you can provide better sustainability practices and creates a collective sense of responsibility across the board
- Monitor and measure; ensure your progress is closely monitored so you can prove your actions are aligned with your sustainability goals. Show your customers your actions speak just as loud as your words.
Lucy Finnie, Junior Consultant
If you need help in establishing your carbon footprint or need advice on how to lead the way in corporate social responsibility for your organisation get in touch with us. We provide tailored services to address your individual requirements and timeframes, we have extensive knowledge in the field of sustainability and can help you on your net zero journey for your scope 1, 2 and 3 carbon emissions.
Here at LCMB, we are experts in delivering better, harder working workplaces and buildings. We can help you save carbon, reduce spend and satisfy your stakeholders. We work with a variety of private and public sector clients to deliver net zero projects – get in touch for a chat.