Corporate Social Responsibility is a business term, which contributes to sustained development, which is done by delivering social, economic, and environmental profits for all the linked stakeholders. CSR is a concept with a lot of practical practices and illustrations. Every company has a different effect on the implementation of CSR. As CSR is a vast topic, it addresses human rights, health, safety, environment, corporate governance, and contribution towards economic development (Hassan, 2015). The main focus of CSR is to provide a change in the overall sustainability of the company. CSR performs as a self-regulatory tool, where a business displays and make sure that the company is in accordance with the national/international norms, laws, and ethical standards.
CSR aims to make sure that a company is doing business in an ethical way. It involves taking account of the company’s human rights, environmental, social, and economic aspects (Hassan, 2015). It includes a lot of practices such as partnering with local communities and working accordingly. CSR can be referred as corporate citizenship, where the company is not getting any financial benefit, but in contrast, they improve the social and environmental aspects.
CSR has its own benefits, where the company tend to bring positive outcomes. Satisfying the employees is one the main purpose of practicing CSR. Employees always want to work where they feel proud of the company, and having a CSR application in the company, employees tend to feel more positive and responsive to the company. CSR also builds satisfied customers, and it is one of the basic purposes of implementing CSR. When a customer comes to know that the company is socially active, having different seminars for the poor people, giving donations, it makes a customer directly satisfied that I’m buying a product from a good company. Its main purpose is to create a positive PR, which can be done on social or direct media.
Primary and secondary stakeholders:
Primary stakeholders are those who have a direct interest in the company. It can include the top management, employees, strategic partners, and staff of the company (Hassan, 2015). While secondary stakeholders are those who are having an indirect interest in the company. It can include the government, banks, customers, clients, and competitors. Here, in context with paradigm toys, the primary stakeholders are the employees working in the company and top management of the company. While, the secondary stakeholders are the customers, and social media who are linked with paradigm toys.
Responsibility to Stakeholders:
As identified, Paradigm toys have customers and the social media as the secondary stakeholders. Paradigm toys can meet their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) towards their secondary stakeholders by:
- Making socially accepted toys to meet the needs of the customers.
- Organize different seminars to attract media and make sure the media has enough content to publish it.
Moreover, the primary stakeholders of Paradigm toys are the employees and the top management of the company. Paradigm toys can improve CSR with the primary stakeholders by:
- Providing annual incentives to the employees, and developing training programs. It will increase the level of pride in the employees that we are at a right place.
- Building relationships with the top management, making them a part of the company’s decision can be helpful for the company in building positive CSR.
Importance of ethical culture:
Ethical culture is a belief which is centered on ethics, and its aim is to improve the respect for nature and humanity and provide a better world (Yentis, 2016). Members of an organization tend to develop personal ethics, in their relationships and improving activities of social and environmental justice. Practicing an ethical culture, where everyone is treated equally and everything is done under the code of law, helps a company improve its brand image and corporate image in the market (Yentis, 2016). The importance of ethical culture is a vast term, that explains that a company performs better when practicing ethics in the organization. The importance of ethical culture explains that it makes the financial situation of the company better, and produce positive results. By having ethics in a workplace, everyone is being treated equally and thus the results are always positive.
Fostering ethical culture:
Paradigm toys’ management can improve their ethical culture by making the toys linked to the poor people of the community. Provide them the toys for free. They can also train the employees to work as a group while attending the customers. Interacting with the staff on daily basis, including them in the decisions, making them feel like at home, these factors can improve the ethical culture of the company.
A traditional audit goes from evaluating the financial and operational data of the company. But, an ethics audit is done to check the level of ethical commitment practiced by the company. An ethical audit includes interviewing with the employees and managers, analyzing the past record of social and environmental activities, and observing the policies and processes of the company (Yentis, 2016).
Value of an ethical audit:
The value of practicing ethics audit is a wide term and it is important for a company to observe ethics audit in their company. By practicing ethics audit in Paradigm toys it can:
- Clear the actual mission of the company, that what it wants to operate.
- Provide a future improvement plan in ethics and financial measures.
- Train the company in meeting the societal and environmental results which the company was not focusing previously.
- Give an overview of the level of ethics which is observed by the company.
- Identify the specific area where the ethical climate is low.
- Give an overview of the issues which the employees are facing.
- Get the areas of vulnerability, which were not examined due to lack of focus.
A widespread ethical dilemma faced by a lot of businesses is the difference of gender in the company. I came across such a situation, where my team partner was differentiated because she was a woman. The supervisor and the management showed a lack of trust in her decisions and actions and led to demotivation. It affected our team performance as well because she was an important member of our team. The supervisor and the management did not consider her an employee and said that she cannot produce results, as she is a woman and she does not match the criteria for which she is hired for.
This issue can be resolved by considering some issues from the management perspective, where they can:
- Talk to the concerned people, creating this type of discrimination and train them to be a leader, who treats everyone equal.
- Let the victim (that woman) gain expertise and provide certain separate tasks, which can lead to results that she can perform the task efficiently as others can do.
Explanation of choice:
From the two solutions told above, I would recommend the first one where the company needs to talk to the supervisor and the management, who are creating disrupt in the workplace. Every employee should be treated equally, regardless of their gender, race, ethnicity, and cultural background. Providing them proper instructions for the equality and justice can lead to desired outcomes and it will improve the overall strength and productivity of the company.
Key components in ethical training program:
Ethical training programs are conducted by organizations, to improve the skills of ethics in the employees, and improve the sustainability of the company (Warren, Gaspar & Laufer, 2014). For this purpose, some training initiatives are taken by the companies to know what type of ethical training they want to observe in their workplace. The three components which paradigm toys can include in their training program includes:
- Ethical behavior development
- Improvement in customer relations
- Providing knowledge about the common dilemmas in the workplace
Explanation of key components:
The above-told training components are chosen because paradigm toys, is a retailer and manufacturer of toys, and being in a retail business means you have to interact with the customers on daily basis. So, training to an ethical way of communication needs to be given to the employees, that in what way they need to interact with the customers. Training for ethical behavior needs attention because ethical behavior concerns the workplace environment, and employees need to be ethically strong so that the workplace is not affected by it.
While the ethics training needs to be done in paradigm toys, there should be a delivery method to help the employees get better training. For this purpose, the trainers will first define the purpose of the training, followed by the reasons which need to be considered. It can be one-on-one communication and should be very precise. Then, the delivery of the training should be from the practical examples and telling about the consequences of the unethical behavior in the company. Next step would be to develop an interest in the employees, by creating classes, seminars where they can do tasks and verbal communication, which will help them in understanding the ethical way more better.
By using this type of delivery method, it will create a positive improvement in the employees (Warren, Gaspar & Laufer, 2014). Performing different tasks and doing a scenario-based activity will ultimately help the trainees better understand the problem and will apply it in their real life.
Hassan, S. (2015). The importance of ethical leadership and personal control in promoting improvement-centered voice among government employees. Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, 25(3), 697-719.
Warren, D. E., Gaspar, J. P., & Laufer, W. S. (2014). Is formal ethics training merely cosmetic? A study of ethics training and ethical organizational culture. Business Ethics Quarterly, 24(1), 85-117.
Yentis, S. M. (2016). Training in the ethics of audit, quality improvement and research–a reply. Anaesthesia, 71(9), 1114-1114.