Business and Social Responsibility: How the Two are Related
As human beings, all of us are inhabitants of society. The society that we are a part of often makes up a large part of why we think, feel, act and behave the way that we do.
A business, on the other hand, is a vision of a certain kind of future. Mostly when people dream of successful business endeavours, they are dreaming of taking the business to greater heights and earning a lot of money. In this primary endeavour of earning money, the business might end up hindering society in some way or the other.
What is Social Responsibility?
Each society is bound by certain rules that make it possible for people to live and thrive in that particular environment. Similarly, along with the adherence to these rules, we also have certain responsibilities towards the society that we live in. This responsibility is often known as social responsibility.
Social responsibility mostly deals with the calm in society. It focuses mainly on maintaining a peaceful social standing, without harming any component of the society to attain certain feats, no matter what those would be.
Social Responsibility in terms of Business
The basic purpose of any thriving business is to incur profits and earn money. However, to be successful in this endeavor, the business setups need to go through several trials and tribulations, undergo crucial tasks and achieve various feats. In this varied process of incurring profits, the business, no matter how big or small it is, needs to adhere to certain social responsibilities.
If you are running a business, it is important to understand the basic fact that the earning of money should not hamper the betterment of society in any way. As people living in society, all of us have certain obligations towards it. We need to follow the norms of society and also make sure that they are being followed by others as well.
As any business is set up, the primary task is to obtain the permission of the people living in the society where the business is to operate. These people need to be ensured that the presence or the running of the business would not stand in the way of peace in society. Business owners often have to swear against causing any harm to society in the process of earning profits or experiencing growth in the business.
Business Endeavours Benefiting the Society
The basic objective of any general business setup is to experience growth, development and profits through the supply of goods and services to various consumers. This basic objective needs to be fulfilled in such a way that society is not hampered but benefits from the incorporation of business in that particular society.
Here are some general points that highlight how a particular business can help the society that it operates in:
- By supplying goods and services that consumers are in want of and cannot produce or manufacture on their own
- By creating employment opportunities that can be fulfilled by the inhabitants of that society
- By developing a proper business environment and setting improved standards of carrying out business
- By ensuring a steady supply of goods and services and ensuring continual development
What Social Responsibilities should be maintained while doing Business?
Business, during its inception, was often seen as just a money-making process. The harms that this business caused on aspects that were out of the business setup were seldom batted an eye on. However, with the advancement in time, social responsibility has become an eminent part of the business culture.
Here is what social responsibility in business comprises.
- Economic Responsibility: As we all know, business is an economic activity. As an economic activity, the primary function of businesses is to satisfy the wants and demands of their customers and earn profits. These profits that businesses make are the basic economic responsibility of a business. As the businesses earn profits, so do the employees associated with that business. Thus, these profits also improve the overall state of the economy.
- Legal Responsibility: Legal responsibilities are not just binding to the individuals living in a society or the country but also the businesses that inhabit that particular society or country. Businesses need to follow and abide by the rules and laws of the society and also operate with the boundaries set by the government. After all, these laws just ensure the betterment of society and a fine balance among its several entities.
- Ethical Responsibility: Several societies, companies and even individuals, in general, have certain ethics that they follow as well as swear by. Ethical responsibilities are not something that is abiding by law but is expected of the business by society. One example of ethical responsibility is ensuring environment-friendly activities on the part of the business establishment.
- Philanthropic Responsibility: Business is one of the most eminent components of a society. It can either make or break a society. Thus, it becomes important that the business functions or operates in a way that is benefitting society. It is the philanthropic responsibility of the business set up to help out the society they function in. This can be done in several ways like donating to the society’s fund, hiring people from the society and so on.
It is common knowledge that man is a social animal. We are all inhabitants of society. It is where we live, function, operate as well as die in. Thus, all of us, and not only business endeavours, have certain social responsibilities that ensure the better functioning of society and ultimately, the greater good of all.