CSR Middle East, CSR dedicated platform with 3.555 corporate members in the Middle East.
How do you create value and manage risk through corporate citizenship? After all, that’s ultimately what matters to
Cargill’s efforts span the globe, said Suzanne McCarty, senior director of community involvement. They include:
NYSE Euronext is setting standards and striving to “be exemplary” with corporate responsibility. This includes employee engagement, environmental sustainability and community engagement, explained Michelle Greene, NYSE Euronext vice president and head of corporate social responsibility
The key business question for stakeholders of any business is, “Why do Corporate Responsibility?” Greene’s response is “to manage risk and drive revenue that ties into the broader corporate strategy. It has to be integral to the strategy of the business.” She explained that the challenge is giving financial analysts the data and metrics for corporate responsibility that are still being developed.
Corporate Responsibility at NYSE starts internally, then leverages the community of companies’ knowledge base and finally, builds a field of thought leadership through the community of companies listed on the exchange.
Verizon has operationalized corporate responsibility in several ways, said Chris Lloyd, executive director of public policy and strategic alliances. They include
-Ethics are front and center
-Minimizing environmental impact and measuring and reporting
-Facilitate a low-carbon economy
-Online safety: educating parents and seniors, assisting teachers, helping law enforcement
-Wireless safety: “don’t text and drive,” RF emissions, conflict minerals
In conclusion, all the panelists agreed that corporate citizenship must align with business strategy, and it is important to identify what standards are relevant within your business units.
Additionally, the role of corporate responsibility in innovation should not be underestimated. McCarty stated that corporate responsibility efforts are definitely driving new business and revenue at Cargill. Greene agreed that corporate responsibility is an important tool in identifying new business opportunities. Lloyd echoed those statements.
The remaining challenge is how to measure corporate responsibility in a way that analysts can evaluate the value created and the risk mitigated. So, ultimately, it’s important to keep asking why the business is engaged in corporate responsibility, how does it impact revenue and risk, and how does it align with strategy.
Ellie is a spring 2011 MBA from Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota and a freelance brand and marketing consultant. Most recently, she has consulted SMEs in qualifying and entering new markets by providing in-depth marketing research and strategic recommendations. She also has extensive experiences in brand strategy and development in several industries.