Corporate Social Responsibility originally finds its roots in our moral values and ethics that are embedded in our religious and cultural roots which laid the foundation for a strong society. In the same way, ethics are part of any business, organization, or governmental institution, and educational institute also. Every business big or small has devised some rules or code of conduct/ethics to monitor the behavior of their employees and employers towards each other and outside the company in dealing with clients and providing them with the high-quality products and services.
Defining code of ethics
The word ‘ethics’ comes from the Greek word meaning ‘ethos’. It means moral character. Ethics means knowing or having an awareness about the difference between right and wrong and keep on continuing to do the right thing.
If you are a leader in your organization, or manager then ethical decisions can be based on your conscience or based on principles. In either case, individuals which are employees and employers also make their own decisions according to the laws of the land or according to their core beliefs.
In a business environment, corporate leaders and their managers must follow the right behavior to benefit the good of everyone including the shareholders, customers, employees, stakeholders, and the community leading towards developing an effective Corporate Social Responsibility role
The manifesto of business ethics bound the business leaders to consider the factor of humanity and corporate social responsibility and do not indulge in such activities that can harm any individual or community.
In short, business activities shouldn’t harm people, products, or services and they should help to protect the reputation of the company.
According to experts the implementation of code of ethics is required in testing times of global pandemic of Covid-19
Minnesota based consultants Doug Wallace and John Pekel state that the business ethics are crucial in the times of change as we are living through corona-induced pandemic. Following the code of ethics and corporate social responsibility in good and stable times is not that difficult but in the chaotic situation like corona, the implementation of code of ethics and corporate social responsibility cannot be taken for granted locally as well as globally.
According to the experts, during times of crisis or confusion, ethics of people tend to guide their behavior. The general response to that is to question and scrutinize behavior to ensure that good ethics are being played out in the workplace. Unethical behavior makes things more difficult for leaders and managers to handle crisis situation at workplace.
Now we should look out what is Corporate Social Responsibility and how it influences the perception of consumers in modernized and empowered societies.
‘Corporate Social Responsibility’ in business or organization refers to doing such activities and policies that can benefit the society based on their own acceptable norms and values.
To be successful and acceptable in a society, businesses have to adhere to social norms and expectations. Some values have worn out over time and has left no moral scope to guide leaders through the intricate dilemmas over right and wrong. This means that businesses are on their own or have freedom to decide the ways that they can best demonstrate social responsibility and give back to their communities.
Similarly, Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is more narrowly about a company's social obligations which means a company's obligations to society in general.
With a light difference, business ethics is also concerned with professional obligations towards employees, customers, suppliers and competitors. It is not wrong to say that there are four common as well as specific ways that companies can join their efforts between business ethics and social responsibility.
In this category, companies can work towards better environment by planting trees, using recycled products, investing in making our planet greener and cleaner by starting such projects that help in eliminating the issue of global warming.
Mammoth companies in the world can help societies fighting with the hunger issues, health issues and employment issues. These companies should give generous funds to social causes of developed and under-developed countries.
Ethical labor practices
Companies should always take care of manual workers and labors. They should take care of their health, as well as paying them on time and give them all the facilities that they deserve. They should always protect their lives and create safe and conducive environment for working.
Big companies should also indulge in the activities of volunteering for social causes like global warming, child labor, racism, mother and child care after birth in developing countries like Asian and African regions.
Therefore, we should conclude that ethics in business and Corporate Social Responsibility of business owners towards societal issues and causes go hand in hand. All the developed nations have formulated ethical map to differentiate between right and wrong, and follow the path that is responsible and acceptable.