16 Nov Organizations and Social Responsibility.
Many organizations tend to focus into being socially responsible and try to contribute to the society. There are many reasons on why to do so, such as increasing customer loyalty, positive company image & as well employee loyalty. However it is clear that upper management and leaders have focused on different aspects that made them neglect social responsibility.
“directors that have duties to shareholders consistently give up corporate social responsibility for increased shareholder value, even when their personal morals and ethical standards suggest alternative courses of action” (Rose, 2007, p.319) “their legal duties favour shareholders above all other stakeholders and society” (Rose, 2007, p.320).
Smith H. Jeff argues that moral values and ethics and not favouring any stakeholder over another is a long term success while not being socially responsible and unethical could result into short-term success (Smith, 2003)
Factors such as globalization, diverse market place, demographic changes and the urge to remain achieving competitive advantage, profit and expansion , legal rules and regulations, business strategies and workforce are all factors that have contributed into directing organizations into having an equal and diverse culture.
International organizations have really identified the importance into having equal and diverse groups contributing and adding value to the business. Almost all of these organizations tend to and focus into achieving more market share and there strategic objective is based on that ground. With that international organizations have passed into “phases”, Ethnocentric, polycentric, regiocentric & geocentric orientations (wind, Douglas and Perlmutter, 1973). Simply it goes into having an inner culture of being “Ethnocentric” that is being arrogant to believing that “Our group, ethnicity, country is the only best people that can do that job”. With that type of mind set and inner culture, they realise that they are losing great international market share. With that they shift into other phases and ends up to the last phase of being Geocentric. “The extreme of this orientation may lead to geocentrism, which is characterized by the attitude of the “best man for the job” irrespective of national origin.” (wind, Douglas and Perlmutter, 1973: 15).
In that shift organizations tend to realize that having any sort of discrimination could lead to losing international market share since competencies, experiences & skill could never be limited into any group.
Unfairness and ethics
It is clear that as mentioned above any discrimination of any minor group would lead to failure. It is extremely important to balance between all stakeholders and be morally and ethically faire and not favour any stakeholder over another. If employees sense any sort of unfairness under any circumstances that would not just affect production, it will also affect the inner culture of the organization that would reflect on the existence of the organization itself.
We would still see such discrimination in different societies. These types of discrimination has been the launching points for penalties and punishments regarding these types of attitudes towards a minority.
However, on the other hand, all the factors that encourages organizations to value diversity, organizations still remain to have concerns regarding implementing procedures and policies that would support diversity in management. (Gilbert and Ivancevich, 2000). Organizations tend to focus into responding to government rules and regulations in addressing this subject rather than approaching this concern in a way to add value to the organization that would reflect into success. The Center for the New American Workplace has conducted a study that shows that organizations that responds to legislative mandates don’t really have a positive effect on the minority, neither it does have a positive reflection on the quality of work life for employees when policies are implemented.
Acceptance of diversity is reached by touching and involving many factors, “fairness, empowerment and openness, all of which supports the diversity initiatives.” (Gilbert and Ivancevich, 2000: 93)However, one of the main factors for such implementation and diversity support is the belief of the leaders and upper management in such thing.
It is very hard to implement such culture in organizations. Especially that all groups tend to be very closed in itself. For instance in Canada, organizations that are run by Asians, all employees are Asians. If owners are Muslims or Jews, most employees are from the same religion. Having diversity is something healthy. But at the same time, it is not possible in some cultures. Individuals tend to have inner beliefs that could promote racism towards a certain group. Such as religion believers not accepting same sex relationships. Leaders amongst organizations who have such beliefs would be irritated to accept to hire gays and lesbians. That is because there inner core belief and what have they been socially raised tells them that it is inacceptable.
Frankly speaking, Practicing religious groups tend to be racist to something! Plus that there are still many color racism, women racism. Now, if individuals in organizations have that type of racism, they will be great barriers to change.
So in other words, it seems great in theory, but by studying comparative religion and having experience in dialog with 100’s of sheikhs, pastors and priests, rabies, atheists and agnostics. I have never come upon a single group that has not had a negative feeling towards another group. So even if implemented, and worked somehow, how can you guarantee the next CEO would walk on the same steps. He might be racist towards a group. I have experienced that at work in Canada myself & have spoke with many managers who are racist in Kuwait as well. It is something that is very hard to change.
Gilbert, J.A. and Ivancevich, J.M. (2000) Valuing Diversity: A Tale of Two Organizations:The Academy of Management Executive (1993-2005):Vol. 14, No. 1, Themes: Forming Impressions and Giving Feedback (Feb., 2000), pp. 93-105, [Online], Available: http://www.jstor.org/discover/10.2307/4165611?uid=3738400&uid=2&uid=4&sid=21100774667041 [May Jun 2012].
Krohmer, H. (2011) International Marketing:Department of Marketing:Institute of Marketing and Management— University of bern, 1 July, [Online], Available: http://www.marketing.imu.unibe.ch/download/skripte/FS2011_IntMarketing_Start.pdf[2 Feb 2012].
wind, Y., Douglas, S.P. and Perlmutter, H.V. (1973) Guidelines for developing international marketing strategies: Journal of Marketing, VOL 37 PP. 14-23, 1 April, [Online], Available: http://skonwar.edublogs.org/files/2011/11/IM-strategy-xta1hx.pdf [2 Feb 20122].