Here’s something from the Weekly Ethics Thought that speaks to a couple of questions I’ve been emailed in the last few weeks:
“Corporate Social Responsibility (“CSR”) programs are a great example of initiatives that build your bottom line while simultaneously representing good corporate ethics. In other words, they are a recognized way to do well in business through the act of doing something good.
Oddly, though, we have lost sight of the fact that many other types of ‘doing good’ also deserve to be seen as promoting ethical behavior while having a significant impact on building your bottom line.
As a prime example, great customer service is unquestionably critical to building your business and the process that underlies great customer service is actually essentially the same as CSR’s. Both require understanding customers’ and potential customers’ needs and perspectives and then addressing those needs and perspectives – as much as is reasonably possible – in serving those customers. (And, like it or not, I bet a whole lot more of your customers will be allegiant to you – or not – because of the quality of your customer service than because of your CSR program…)
So what’s the moral of the story here?
If your department’s, division’s, or company’s values statement promotes doing good as a way of doing well (Or simply doing good for its own sake!) you can use that values statement as a highly effective springboard for building and reinforcing great customer service right along with any number of other ‘good-doing’ you may have identified. A well written and well implemented values statement will set you up to promote and reinforce all kinds of ethical behavior that, simultaneously, will significantly build your bottom line.”