What is Corporate Social Responsibility?
Corporate Social Responsibility or CSR for short, is addressing and implementing ways your company can help support others or the environment through sustainable practices, training, and incorporating better business decisions.
Although there is no legal obligation, it’s your way of giving back, helping others while you grow your business. Putting measures in place that ethically help others or the planet less fortunate than you.
CSR is a gift, it’s a way of making more businesses accountable for their actions, and although you may be thinking “but it’s just me, I’m tiny!’ All businesses need to show, even the smallest element, of CSR in their businesses….read on for some simple ideas.
What Corporate Social Responsibilities Can A Small Business Implement?
There’s a whole range of different ways you can implement CSR changes into your business that mean something to you.
It’s important not to pick something that doesn’t resonate with you or your core business values; you can make it fun, challenging or even downright crazy, but by spending time thinking about what you deeply care about will make you more interested and closer to the project.
Here’s some very loose suggestions to spark your interest:
1. Think small, do you know where your favourite tea or coffee comes from? Is it Fair Trade, sustainable, or show Rainforest Alliance? Is the supply chain sustainable and does it support a cooperative of farmers and their livelihoods? Yes? Tick, you’ve successfully met a CSR goal…No? Maybe explore other options for introducing a change to your favourite hot drink that helps support those less fortunate than you.
2. If you have a love for sport, this network organisation helps forge a healthy relationship with exercise, wholesome food and breaking down barriers between sport and poverty in some of the most disadvantaged areas in the world from Trelya, Cornwall to New Delhi, India. Find out more here – https://network.streetgames.org/our-work/sport-good.
3. Maybe you’ve been touched by cancer or lost a close friend or family member. Your company (or just challenge yourself!) can take part in some of the annual events organised by Cancer Research, to raise precious money to keep funding life-saving research and specialist cancer after-care support. Take a look at their website for some ideas you can join in on and promote through your business social channels and website. https://www.cancerresearchuk.org/get-involved.
It's Just Me! Why Is CSR Important To My Business?
Although there is no legal obligation to introduce CSR measures into your business, the initiative has been put in place for businesses to implement transparent, ethical practices that raise the awareness of an ethical supply chain and fare trade agreements that reduce child slavery, global poverty and misconduct.
By making small changes to your business practices that are chosen with care, you could be helping to improve the lives of less fortunate families and environmental improvements that support society as a whole.
So What Does Website Magpie Do...
Well I’m glad you asked..! 😉
As we have a magpie as our company name and corporate logo we are naturally passionate about the environment. We love to grow our own herbs and veg, and have planted fruit trees in the garden as well as having an office full of tropical plants and trees that naturally clean our air and make us feel happy, even in the darkest months of the year.
But we do much more than just this…
As I was once an environmental consultant, graduating from the Open University with a PGdip in Environmental Management and working on huge projects for The European Commission, Department For Energy and Climate Change and Natural England for 5 years, I have a real love for the natural environment and clean energy.
It was important that our website was powered by clean renewable energy, and as we wanted this for ourselves we also set up a partnership to provide clean green hosting to our customers too at a discounted rate. Please take a look at this link to find out more and ways we can help you switch to our green hosting from as little as £7 p/m.
OUR CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY PARTNERSHIPS
Green Web Hosting
Our Own 100% Renewable Hosting
One Tree Planted
International Reforestation Charity
World Vision International
SUPPORTS DISADVANTAGED COMMUNITIES
Ethical Tea & Rainforest Alliance
Tea & COFFEE PARTNERSHIPS
We Believe in Good Tea Doing Better
We looked at all the ways we could incorporate good practices in our working environment that wouldn’t have a negative impact on the environment.
Such as not printing anything unnecessary and when the need arises (very rare) that we would use recycled paper in our printers, and recycled print cartridges.
As a massive lover of tea (well I am British, what do you expect?!) I only buy tea and coffee that has an alliance with the rainforest and sustainable farming practices.
I don’t know about you, but I really love Columbian ground coffee fresh from a French press, and my mid-morning doesn’t go so well if I don’t get my one-a-day caffeine hit! Which company do you use? I use Union Direct Trade for their strong farming cooperatives and sustainable practices.
What Else Do You Do?
Well! I grew up in a household swamped by foster kids, they had the most horrific backgrounds you’d ever hear but my mum, who is a social worker, just made it her everyday task to look after her family and make sure those foster kids got the same opportunities as we did.
It always inspired me to do better, and for the past two years, I have chosen to sponsor a village in Sierra Leone that was one of the most badly affected areas during the Ebola crisis in 2015. Swathes of families were killed by the horrific disease leaving children orphaned and responsible for not only caring for younger siblings but also to generate money to survive.
The charity I support is World Vision and my monthly contribution goes to help rebuild children’s lives, provides education, uniforms, school books, teacher training, medicine, nursing training, it gives girls the chance to learn instead of working the fields and having to marry too young, it gives children the chance to regain their childhood and provide more opportunities educationally and socially. The charity are on the ground for the next 6 years helping the village to learn and rebuild for themselves.
If you are interested in finding out more about the charity and what they do and ways you can help please visit this link.
So if our efforts have inspired your own corporate social responsibility journey to implement something of your own, here’s 5 top tips for increasing CSR in your business.
5 Ways You Can Increase Your Corporate Social Responsibility
CSR will become more and more important over the next two years, particularly important will be to reduce your carbon footprint and think more sustainably, incorporating more eco-conscious methods into your business practices.
- Try to use video conference calls instead of traveling to meetings. This will help reduce your carbon footprint and the additional hours spent traveling! We like to use Zoom and Skype for our business meetings.
- Get in touch for our team to manage the switch from your regular website hosting company (which uses fossil fuels to power their servers) and change to our 100% renewable energy powered green website hosting company in the UK. See here for more information.
- Sign up to a charity that means something to you, maybe training people from disadvantaged backgrounds with IT skills to improve their chances of a better-paid job? There are lots of local charities that would be thrilled to have your support. We love helping One Tree Planted, Children in Need, Help For Heros and World Vision International.
- Think about where your favourite hot beverage is coming from, does it have a sustainable farming practices logo or Rainforest Alliance certificate? Maybe do a little research and explore alternative options.
- Personally I stay away from products that use ‘Palm Oil’ even if they say it’s ‘Sustainable’, this for me just means they replaced fabulous rich rainforests that had a wealth of biodiversity with palm oil plants that only benefit the corporate world and not the animal kingdom.
I’d love to hear from you and the many ways you are introducing corporate social responsibility into your working environment.
If you are interested in switching to our green powered website hosting, please check out the packages we offer here and get in touch if you have any questions. It’s the very best thing you could do for your business and this planet! firstname.lastname@example.org