Corporate social responsibility: Employee satisfaction
by vivve on April 8, 2010
Back to the topic of corporate social responsibility – but this time from an introspective corporate perspective. Social responsibility is so often thought of as being synonymous with philanthropy, community relations, and sustainability, but it’s just as much about the internal attitudes and behaviors within an organization as it is about the external.
Organizations can sometimes fall victim to hyperopia and fail to see that their largest potential advocate base exists just under their noses — often under the same roof. Employees that love their companies are contagious, and spread the positive word to other potential employees and customers. Of the companies that recogize this, only a small percentage successfully align their internal behavior and actions with their goals in a way that embodies internal CSR. Social responsibility within an organization translates into policies, behaviors and organizational cultures that spotlight the employee and emphasize their well-being.
Employees that feel valued, cared for, a sense of belonging, and empowered in their contribution to the greater vision will work harder and more effectively. Aside from this, the creativity and innovation from a happy, committed employee is far superior to one who has fallen into an indifferent routine. I know this is obvious, but looking around at the number of inspired corporations, it makes me wonder: is it obvious? I think it’s considered common knowledge that satisfied employees mean better productivity and ideation, and lower costs of hiring, training, and lost productivity in onboarding. So where’s the missing link?
For me, I think it’s in congruency: An alignment of what’s on the wall with what actually happens in the trenches. From employee hire to employee departure, what do you communicate, how to you behave, do you have a plan? Do you set your teams up for success on a regular basis? Do you have an infrastructure and culture established that fosters discourse, ideation and innovation? What about your management style? Communication style? Conflict management and resolution style? Are these ones that encourage open dialogue, mutual understanding, and win-win solutions?
More on these individual topics later – but for now, it’s food for thought, because you can’t mobilize positive change if you don’t know where you’re coming from in the first place.