New year, new life. This sentence is top of mind for most of us after the holiday season.
The end of a calendar year is a natural moment to reflect on what went well and what didn’t, and the new year is an opportunity to make amendments and change the course.
It is New Year’s resolutions time, and not only at a personal level. Companies behave in the same fashion and build strategic plans to succeed. By now, I am sure you’ll have your business lines covered, but what about your Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) strategy?
In case you still need to define it, here are some tips that worked for us last year in this area that we call Responsible Business (RB):
- Think big. CSR covers a wide range of subjects, so make sure you have a holistic approach. At CWT, governance, ethics, human resources, human rights, environment, responsible products and services, and community involvement are the domains we focus on.
- Put yourself under the scrutiny of top experts. Make sure you validate your plan in front of a savvy organization. For us, it’s EcoVadis and, as a result of their annual assessment of our progress, we went from a Silver to a Gold rating for two years in a row now.
- Spread the word. Organize training sessions on hot Responsible Business topics for your employees to make sure they are well briefed about the most important CSR challenges of your company and know how to act. And do not limit yourself to internal audiences. Go out and participate in CSR sessions and events to share your experience and your vision.
- Don’t walk alone. Hold hands with other entities that are doing a good job in the areas you are focusing on and support their efforts towards a greater good. Your contribution will always be very welcome and, in return, you will learn a great deal and get valuable ideas of best practices you can implement to fine tune your Responsible Business policy.
- Care. Look after your people, the environment and the community. Involve your stakeholders – employees, clients, suppliers, etc. – and raise the bar by setting the example and have clear and written guidelines of what you expect. Foster corporate volunteering. The benefits are massive and range from improving collaboration between members of different teams to driving employee engagement, as well as increasing corporate visibility, skill development, and employee retention and attraction.