Ethics Application: Corporate Social Responsibility For Competitive Advantages

Submitted By mtd69
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Pages: 5

1. In Chapter 1, Read the ETHICS APPLICATION—Corporate Social Responsibility for Competitive Advantage. Summarize the reasons why companies are adopting corporate social responsibility initiatives. What arguments support the pursuit of social initiatives by business organizations, and what arguments suggest that the role of business is primarily to make profits?

The pursuit of social initiatives by the business organizations according to the book (Cravens & Piercy, 2009, p.25) is clearly because society expects more social responsibly and awareness from companies than simple business transactions. A way to explain it before entering in the details of the book would be the make-up companies. Many make-up companies and pharmaceutical companies use to test their products on animals. Coming from France, I can talk about the French companies; they stopped trying their make-ups on animals because customers were outraged and shocked by the lack of social responsibility and the lack of humanity from these companies. The way make-up companies advertise now in France their product in order to acquire more customers, and it works, it did increased business dramatically, is by clearly stating: “Not tested on animals” or messages showing and letting the customers know that their companies do not use animals for their products testing. They prove that they are socially responsible, more human, and customers highly respond to it (in France at least).
The way this works here, as the book explains is the same; corporations understood that Corporate Social Responsibility need to be mastered and integrated in their strategic and marketing plan, as it is essential to survival and to acquire more customers: “the most strategic CSR adds a dimension to a company’s value proposition, so that social impact is central to strategy.” (Cravens & Piercy, 2009, p.25)
The book clearly explains that this is not a cost, but an investment and it should be added to the core business, as a competitive advantage, and an opportunity for innovation and differentiation.
As we can see in the “ETHIC APPLICATION” Dell for example is trying to improve its components, by making them less toxic, and trying to reduce the energy consumption of its products. This is socially responsible, people will respond to this, because they will feel safer with less toxic components, and will like the energy saving, and earth protection technology. By sympathizing with the customers, and giving them a better conscience and peace in their minds, Dell will very likely increase its sales.
It may sound redundant, but it is as usual: what the customer wants. In this generation, customers want products that are earth responsible, meaning that they do not damage the earth, that are low energy consuming, that will be recycled and user friendly. Companies understood this, and are now moving toward it, in order to meet customers’ demands and tastes: “consumers in five of the world’s leading economies believe that business ethics have worsened in the past five years, and they are turning to ‘ethical consumerism’ to make companies more accountable” (Cravens & Piercy, 2009, p.25).
This proves that companies are simply meeting customers’ demands and tastes, with more ethical practices (make-up companies not using animal testing; Dell using less toxic component and less energy consuming technology; One Laptop Per Child, offering cheap computer to poor children to be more friendly with society and increase business shares in the same time, as for Microsoft and its $3 program).
2. Review the McKinsey & Co. website. Are there indications that the consulting company is market-oriented? The website is

Designing a webpage can be very expensive, and making it user friendly, easy of access and understanding can be even more expensive. This is why, when companies have such user friendly webpages such as McKinsey & Co. it is obvious that they are aiming to please their customers and make