It's Not Just About Being Nice

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It's Not Just About Being Nice

The next time you hear someone describe your efforts as “nice” I encourage you to take a moment to explain why it isn’t just nice, it is necessary.
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Corporate responsibility isn't just about being nice: http://3bl.me/7rwr4a

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Thursday, March 26, 2015 - 3:00pm

CONTENT: Blog

Mark Shamley
President & CEO
ACCP

A recent article in US Today suggests that the trend that shows an increasing focus on corporate responsibility is all about being perceived as “nice”.

The article talks about McDonald’s raising wages for workers and quotes a prominent merchant banker who suggests that companies are simply trying to accommodate customers’ expectations, especially younger ones, by avoiding being perceived as “bad actors.” The article also includes the rise of certified B Corporations as part of the trend toward “nice.”

If you read this as I do, you may agree with my assessment that this article misses the point and does a real disservice not only to companies that are putting real effort and real resources into being responsible corporate citizens but to those of you working in this profession.

CEOs realize that the sustainability of the business in many cases is directly tied to the sustainability of market share, of core resources, of attracting and retaining the best employees. To do these things – keep market share, ensure that the material resources needed to produce a product are available and to have employees that are invested in doing the best work possible – isn’t just nice, it’s smart business.

While I understand the article is but one piece and one person’s take on what is a very complex, well-studied and continually evolving field, there is a danger in letting a meme like the one that suggests we are just being “nice” to take root.

The work you do each day is vital, not just to the social causes you impact, but also to your company. Your work, in many instances, is the backbone of what ultimately leads to the sustainability of your company’s business model.

Over the past year and continuing forward, ACCP has focused on helping you understand and articulate how your work interrelates and contributes to business success and ultimately how to convey the real value of what you do. The next time you hear someone describe your efforts as “nice,” I encourage you to take a moment to explain why it isn’t just nice, it is necessary.

Keywords: Philanthropy & Cause Initiatives | ACCP | Corporate Responsibility | Mark Shamley | Responsible Business & Employee Engagement

CONTENT: Blog