Lerch Bates Inc. Building Insight

Global Leaders in Technical Consulting for the Building Industry

Do Companies Owe Anything to Society?

For-profit businesses only continue to exist if they make a profit.  Otherwise, they join the ranks of many bankrupt firms before them.  Therefore, is it reasonable to think that the entire company’s energy should be devoted to the task of making money?

But what is a company really made of?  That answer is simple-employees.  Do employees have other aspirations in their lives besides seeing the company make money?  Of course they do.  Studies have shown that employees want to feel good about the job they do and they want to make a difference.  Employees also want to feel good about the company they work for.  I think we all know someone that left a company because they did not like the direction the company was going or the manner in which the company conducted business.

So, does a company owe anything to society?  Ask different people and you get different answers.  However if you ask if a company has a responsibility to make the employees feel good about themselves and the company they work for, the majority of people would answer say yes.

Having your company participate in a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) program can achieve many things.  The employees that participate come away with a feeling of satisfaction for what they did.  They feel they made a difference.  During recruiting, candidates comment on the fact that they like to see a company that is involved with these types of activities.  And guess what?  Society wins too.  Non-profit organizations benefit from the employee involvement.  The people the non-profit organizations help certainly benefit as well.  All-in-all, everyone wins.

If your company does not have a CSR program now, consider starting one.  I think your company, the employees and society will all gain from it.

For those of you with a CSR program, please share your success stories with us.