Come jump on the CSR bandwagon

by 08 Jul 2008

It’s surprising that eighty per cent of CEOs admit that they don’t know anything (or very little) about Australia’s Emissions Trading Scheme (see news storyCEOs hazy on emissions trading).

However what is even more surprising is that even though they don’t know anything about it, 62 per cent of CEOs believe that the scheme is justified.

In fact, this is not surprising at all because most executives today will willingly agree to and sign up for any corporate social responsibility (CSR) program that is on the go. They will sign up knowing very little about it and just “embrace” it for the sake of their marketing strategy.

Why are all these companies jumping on the CSR bandwagon and committing to a CSR program that they know nothing about? To satisfy the notoriously demanding – and environmentally conscious – Generation Y?

The frightening thing about every company’s commitment to battle global warming is how little information (or how little accurate information) they have.

If you look to the information provided in the survey in CEOs hazy on emissions trading, you will note that 94 per cent of the CEOs stated that they got their information about emissions trading from news reports.

While not casting aspersions on the media as a reliable source of information – and who would? – often conventional wisdom can be the product of media-loving experts and expert-loving media.

CEOs, HR directors and executive teams should stop jumping on the CSR bandwagon and instead align their strategies to their company’s genuine core values. In effect, to believe in what they advocate instead of simply throwing CSR documents to the marketing team to spread to the world.

Generation Y may be demanding but they’re not stupid.