The business of business should not be about money. It should be about responsibility. It should be about public good, not private greed – Anita Roddick, Founder, Body Shop.
The concept of CSR
Corporate Social Responsibility is the ideal act of fulfilling the social responsibility of the corporations in a sustainable manner. Hence, upon understanding the need of the hour, the World Business Council for Sustainable Development has pronounced CSR as the business contribution to sustainable economic development. A sustainably developed nation is one that carefully utilizes its resources in a way that they not only meet the requirements of the current generations but also the future. India as a developing nation has been working in the league to sustainably develop itself with due support from the large corporations to transform into a state of being developed.
CSR is known by various names, corporate responsibility, corporate ethics, corporate accountability and corporate citizenship, etc. CSR goes beyond just making profits. It holds the companies and stakeholders responsible for their impact on the people and the planet as a whole. Fiinovation is one such CSR consultor firm that understands the graveness of the situation and helps in channelizing the corporations’ resources to the NGOs to help them uplift the weaker sections of the society. Innovative Financial Advisors Pvt Ltd reviews have been terrific and hundreds of SMEs have been associated with them for bringing about a change in the nation.
Historical background of CSR
The concept of CSR predates to 1700 BC i.e. around 5000 years ago. In the ancient Mesopotamia, King Hammurabi introduced a code of conduct in which builders and farmers were killed if their carelessness caused the deaths of others, or major inconvenience to local citizens. This incident was seen as the major CSR cult in the entire world. Many more incidents pertaining to CSR can be noticed. Some of them being in ancient Rome when senators dissented about the failure of businesses and contributed sufficient taxes to fund their military campaigns and in 1622 when dissatisfied shareholders in the Dutch East India Company started issuing pamphlets complaining about the management secrecy and “self-enrichment”. The scenario changed a bit after the industrialization in the late 1920s when the industrialists used some of their wealth to support philanthropic ventures. Later, discussions about CSR as a major responsibility of the corporations and not only the govt. gained momentum and got recognized as an important business activity.
CSR grew as a need to develop the society sustainably and uplift the weaker section of the society. In India, the term popularized around in the 1910s. In it, the first phase of CSR was known for its charity and philanthropic nature where CSR was influenced by family values, traditions, culture and religion. Whereas, the second phase was during the Independence movement when Mahatma Gandhi urged rich industrialists to share their wealth and benefit the poor and disregarded in society. Later, the activity was characterized by the emergence of Public Sector Undertakings to ensure equitable distribution of wealth in society. Now, in the current scenario, CSR has been characterized as a sustainable business strategy leading an increased momentum in industrial growth, making it possible for companies to contribute more towards social responsibility.
Significantly, what started as charity is now understood and accepted as a responsibility.