In recent years, we’ve seen companies become increasingly accountable for their actions – and inaction – regarding social issues. According to an Aflac study, 77% of consumers say they are now motivated to purchase from companies committed to making the world a better place, while 73% of investors state that efforts to improve the environment and society contribute to their investment decisions. In other words, companies can’t just say they’re committed to improving local communities or protecting the planet. They must follow through, as stakeholders are paying attention.
Yet, some companies claim that when a crisis strikes, it can be hard to uphold their corporate social responsibility (CSR) commitments – and I understand their challenges.
Zebra is a responsible corporate citizen and has prioritized our CSR efforts in the face of recent global and regional crises.
For example, when the pandemic started, it may have been natural for many organizations to pull back on their volunteerism and philanthropic initiatives. Zebra did the opposite. We improved and globalized our offerings to empower more employees to get involved, even virtually. And with supply chain challenges, it would have been understandable if we would have scaled back the efforts of our Green Product Council or eliminated some of our environmental impact objectives – at least temporarily. Yet, we didn’t.
We charged forth, more focused than ever on upholding our commitments to our stakeholders, which includes our employees, partners, customers and shareholders. We even launched The Green Herd, a new employee network focused on sustainability! Building upon some of the incredible work seen across many different teams and regions, The Green Herd’s mission is to support Zebra’s environmental, social and philanthropy efforts; and provide individual growth and development opportunities through active participation in sustainability initiatives.
We don’t believe that CSR can fall by the wayside during times of crisis.
So, I’ve invited two guests to join me on the latest episode of the Your Edge Podcast to talk more about what they and their teams have been doing to sustain their CSR initiatives and how other organizations can learn from their experiences, even when crises introduce new challenges.