Consumers and employees make decisions based on corporate social responsibility, said Michael Barnett in NJBIZ

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Monday, October 30, 2017
Newark, NJ


The concept of Corporate Social Responsibility is pretty broad, according to Michael Barnett, a Management and Global Business Professor at Rutgers Business School Newark and New Brunswick.

"CSR entails a broad set of activities that most companies have always engaged in to some degree, whether it be providing pay and benefits to employees that at least marginally exceed what's required by law and is necessary to retain them, or donating to local charities in the community," said Barnett, whose research includes firms' CSR activities. "It seems that more companies are using the broader concept of CSR to bundle together, manage, and advertise such activities, though, whereas in the past companies may have given less heed to explicitly organizing under the CSR umbrella."

This is particularly true for companies that deal with consumers, and ones that depend on highly skilled and younger workers, he said. "Consumers and employees now have more information available via digital and social media about how firms are being both socially and environmentally responsible, as well as irresponsible, and are more willing to make purchase and employment decisions on these bases," Barnett said.

Large companies have more resources and a bigger voice, so they "obviously make larger splashes when they announce major CSR initiatives," Barnett said. "But smaller businesses can have a much more direct impact on their local communities, from supporting local workers better, paying their fair share of taxes, donating to local service organizations and encouraging their employees to do so; and by using fair, transparent governance practices, to name but a few," added Barnett.

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TAGS: Corporate Social Responsibility Management and Global Business Michael Barnett