What is it?
According to Wikipedia, Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), also known as responsible business or a socially responsible investment, is defined as an active and voluntary contribution to social, economic and environmental improvement from companies, generally in order to improve their competitive situation and added value.
Heeding to the definition provided by the International Labour Organisation (ILO), CSR is a set of actions considered by companies so that their activities have a positive impact on society and reinforce the principles and values governing them, both with their own methods and in-house processes, and in relation to other agents. CSR is an initiative that is voluntary in nature.
In other words, this is a way to manage multinational companies, small and medium companies, freelancers, etc., that is based on managing the impact that their activity has on their customers, employees, shareholders, local communities, the environment, and on society as a whole.
Companies can play a very important role in the lives of people, not just by providing employment and wealth, but also acting as an agent for development within the communities they call home.
What does it entail?
It entails mandatory compliance with national and international law that bears on social, labour, environmental and Human Rights issues, as well as any other voluntary action the company wishes to undertake to improve the quality of life of its employees, the communities where it takes action and society as a whole.
Social responsibility is the idea that companies must balance for-profit activities with activities that benefit society, which entails developing companies with a positive relationship to the society where they conduct their business.
CSR is a cross-cutting concept that affects different company management spheres, so activities carried out under the framework of CSR must be related to the company’s basic activity and be ongoing in nature. Furthermore, upper management must be committed to them.
At Arrabe Integra, we take this very seriously.
To start with, “in-house” we focus on professional flexibility, work-life balance, diversity and equality, integrating workers with disabilities and environmental efficiency.
But we also focus on the footprint we leave in society.
Some time ago, we entered into a fruitful collaboration with Fundación MasHumano (MoreHuman Foundation), sponsoring the Premios Jóvenes MasHumano (MoreHuman Youth Awards), which are now in the 13th edition. The purpose of this programme is to support youth in developing ideas and projects that were created on the foundation of innovation and Social Responsibility.
Along with this foundation, we began collaborating with the programme Talento Solidario (Charitable Foundation), under the Botín Foundation, oriented toward boosting and driving the social sector (which is already 10% of the GDP and 12.5% of the labour force in Spain) to work on improving internal management processes, through consulting, strategic assessment, training, improving leadership and management skills for directors and work teams, all with the aim of helping entities to be more efficient and sustainable with a greater social impact, and to encourage innovation in the sector.
But that’s not all. It also opened doors for us to collaborate with other foundations that carry out laudable social work. As a company, we collaborated with financial donations, but more importantly, with volunteers. These volunteers come from Arrabe Integra’s human resources. While this does entail a “cost” in terms of hours/employee for the company, it also encourages a team spirit, personal satisfaction for each volunteer, a feeling of belonging, and loads of other things we are taught at business schools and by great gurus in motivation and leadership. And they are undeniably all true.
In our next blog entry, we will tell you about these collaboration projects we’re so looking forward to. We do this so we can share what we do and collect ideas, but also so that interested parties can collaborate, as well.
As a wise man once said, the more you help others, the more you help yourself, and the more you give, the more you receive.