Wednesday, June 15, 2005
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What to make of this corporate trend?
Tobias Buck reports in the Financial Times on the growth of an interesting corporate trend:
Click here for the actual KPMG report. Among the interesting facts:
If I'm working for an NGO devoted to corporate social responsibility, I'd be very, very happy with these results.
[Why? These corporations are primarily reporting to advance their own self-interest--ed. Yes, and that's a self-perpetuating mechanism, which is much better that corporations acting against their own self-interest. This might be a case where NGOs have managed to reconstitute how corporations define their interests]posted by Dan on 06.15.05 at 12:43 AM
You're right--it is the company's advancing their self-interest. One of the more powerful factors in that self-interest is that these reports often allow the companies to avoid including shareholder proposals from environmental and social groups seeking such reports in their proxy statements. While the groups get the reports they are seeking, management avoids having statements about what poor corporate citizens they are in their proxy statements.posted by: Steven on 06.15.05 at 12:43 AM [permalink]
I think you're missing what the report is really saying. It's trying to make the case that "coporate social responsibility" is the next management fad and you [managers] better not be the last one to get in on it.
But what kind of a fad only grows 15% or so in three years? That's a very poorly performing fad indeed, and if you manage the KPMG group set to capitalize on it you would be casting about for ways to bump up business in a hurry.
"This might be a case where NGOs have managed to reconstitute how corporations define their interests" - I think not. I think this is case where someone dicovered a treasure trove of 'studies' and PR they were using to push the TQM fad a dozen years ago and have repurposed it to support the "corporate social responsibility" consulting unit.posted by: Jos Bleau on 06.15.05 at 12:43 AM [permalink]
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