Corporate social responsibility is an increasingly common discussion in business today. Corporations want to avoid the perception of being large, impersonal and uncaring organizations that only care about profits. Look at the newest Television commercials from AT&T and Verizon. Slogans such as “we never stop working for you” are intended to be a continual reminder that they care about consumers. Corporations also try to increase their perceived social responsibility through their contributions to charity groups and political organizations. However, the latter can often backfire.
Organizations are becoming more aware of the benefits to appearing socially conscious. Contemporary marketing techniques have certainly trended toward reducing the “big bad corporation” stereotypes, but I don’t believe corporations have truly become more socially conscious as a result. One example are news corporations. They definitely do whatever they can to produce ratings simply for the sake of profit. Their stories are often total fabrications and even when the story is accurate it is provided to the viewer with a strong emphasis on the negative. In addition, newspapers and TV news are presented at a 4th grade education level. How does that help our society?
Many organizations are aware of their social responsibilities, and make efforts to improve. But I don’t believe the majority of corporations are concerned about much beyond their profits and shareholder satisfaction.