Why invest in CSR when the economy is slow?

In Sri Lanka, living the wildlife the wild way

Just the other day someone asked me “Why should I invest in CSR when the economy is slow?”

The only constant in life is perpetual change.
I previously defined that Corporate Social Responsibility is:
  • about responsibility
  • about society in general

Responsibility towards your society is a real commitment and a serious engagement.

It isn’t about a budget or a trend.

Do you invest in CSR because it is trendy?

Then you will fail in your mission. People won’t trust you.

In times of recession, your audience needs to feel they can rely on you.

That your intentions are set, that the consideration towards your society, your environment, your employees and your stakeholders, withstands crisis.

It is your opportunity as a leader to show that you are not just motivated by short-termism.

Use your CSR engagement as a management tool under constant renovation which will last throughout time.

Clean-up, streamline your strategy, sharpen your vision, and prune initiatives that have lost their relevance and leverage. But no matter what, don’t hamper your ability to leverage your reputation the day the recession turns around.

Building loyalty is about walking your talk. In the long run. Not when optimal economic, social and environmental conditions are there. How can you be trusted if you only show a human face when you consider that the time is right?

Don’t we say we know who our true friends are in times of trouble?

Investing in CSR is good for your business

A recent study shows that “75% of those who have read about a company’s CSR agenda on its website made them more likely to purchase products or services from that company” (Burson-Marstteller- 2010).

What’s more, 70% are willing to pay a premium for goods produced by socially responsible firms.

If you look at CSR from a very business oriented perspective, and consider the pyramid of Maslow, you will realise that through CSR you can answer these needs.

Your CSR now becomes a marketing and business tool, enhancing the elements of a successful, visionary and innovative business.

Also CSR is fun. CSR is fulfilling. Positively rewarding with an “infallible” win-win scenario.

The greatest satisfaction in giving is when the receiver can’t pay you back!

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2 Responses to Why invest in CSR when the economy is slow?

  1. Adrian Nichol says:

    Hi Zeina

    This looks great. As part of my preparation for the Antarctica project, I think I am going to find your blogs really useful. Keep them coming.

    ade

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