In a perfect world, a business could be just that: a company that solves a consumer problem and offers a service. But the reality is that so many people around us need our help, and operating a socially conscious business is one of the best ways to get help to those that need it most.
Not only is being socially responsible a trait of a good human being but it’s also an expectation from more and more consumers—77% of people are motivated to buy from companies that want to make the world a better place and 73% of investors claim that social responsibility plays a part in their investment decisions.
So with that in mind, could your business take some steps to better serve your clients and those in need? We’re here to help you find out.
What is Corporate Social Responsibility?
Essentially, it’s a business taking the initiative to operate in an ethical and transparent way that takes into account the impact of its actions on people, the planet, and profits. This can manifest in a myriad of ways—from how you source materials to how you treat employees, to the type of charitable initiatives you support.
There are a lot of different angles you can take when it comes to social responsibility, but the key is ensuring that whatever changes or additions you make to your business model are authentic and in line with your company values.
Some common examples of socially responsible businesses are:
- Green or sustainable: These types of companies make an effort to reduce their carbon footprint and use sustainable practices. This might involve using recycled materials, renewable energy, or investing in green infrastructure.
- Community-oriented: Businesses that focus on giving back to their local communities are a great example of social responsibility. This can look like partnering with local charities, hosting community events, or offering discounts to low-income customers.
- Ethical businesses: These companies make a point of being transparent about their business practices and ensuring that their employees are treated fairly. They might source Fair Trade materials, pay their employees a living wage, or offer flexible work hours.
- Sustainably sourced materials: A big part of social responsibility is ensuring that the products and materials you use are ethically and sustainably sourced. This might mean using recycled materials, investing in renewable energy, or using Fairtrade products.
- Local sourcing: Another way to make sure your business is socially responsible is to focus on using local suppliers. This cuts down on emissions from transportation, supports the local economy, and helps to reduce your carbon footprint.
So those are some examples of what it means to be a socially responsible business. But how can you make sure that your company is operating in a socially responsible way? We’ve got a few suggestions.
7 Ways to Make Your Business More Socially Conscious
There are a lot of different ways that you can make your business more socially conscious. But it’s important to remember that not all of these will work for every business. The key is to find the tactics that make the most sense for your company and that you can realistically implement. With that in mind, here are seven ways to make your business more socially responsible:
1. Educate yourself and your employees on corporate social responsibility.
The first step to making your business more socially responsible is to educate yourself and your employees on what social responsibility is and why it’s important. This will help to ensure that everyone is on the same page and that your company is making changes that are authentic and in line with your values.
2. Evaluate your business practices.
Once you’ve educated yourself and your employees on social responsibility, take some time to evaluate your current business practices. Are there any areas where you could be more socially responsible? This is a great time to brainstorm ways that you can make changes and improvements.
3. Implement changes.
Once you’ve evaluated your business practices, it’s time to start making changes. This might involve switching to sustainable materials, investing in renewable energy, or partnering with local charities, such as getting involved in ZuLoo’s 242 Partner Program. Whatever changes you make, be sure to communicate them to your employees and customers.
4. Be transparent about your business practices.
Part of being a socially responsible business is being transparent about your business practices. This means being open and honest about the way you operate and treating your employees fairly. It’s important to remember that being transparent doesn’t mean you have to share everything about your business. But it does mean being honest about the things you are sharing.
5. Give back to your community.
One of the best ways to be a socially responsible business is to give back to your community. This can be done in a number of ways, such as partnering with local charities, hosting community events, or offering discounts to low-income customers. Some businesses have started to offer paid volunteer days for their employees or give their employees funds to serve others.
6. Focus on sustainable practices.
Another way to make your business more socially responsible is to focus on sustainable practices. This might involve using recycled materials, investing in renewable energy, or using Fairtrade products.
7. Be an advocate for corporate social responsibility.
Finally, one of the most important things you can do as a business owner is to be an advocate for corporate social responsibility. This means speaking up about the importance of social responsibility and working to promote change in your industry. It’s also important to lead by example and operate your business in a socially responsible way.
Become Socially Conscious with ZuLoo’s Give 2 for 2
We can do so much more together than we can do alone. So if you’re looking for ways to make a difference and give back to society, we have the perfect solution. ZuLoo’s Give 2 for 2 initiative allows businesses like yours to donate 2% of either your gross sales, net profits, or revenue for the 2 billion people on earth that don’t have a safe place to go #2 (poop).
Our 501c3, ZuLoo Humanitarian Outreach, is trying to provide clean, safe, and sustainable toilets to the 2.4 billion people who need it most and we’d love for you to be a part of our efforts. Take a look at our 242 program here, and let ZuLoo be your social impact partner.