In case you missed it, not too long ago, the Washington Post ran a piece about how companies fare in business when they have a ‘Corporate Social Responsibility’ program in place vs. those that do not. Among other things, what they found was that “from February 2008 to February 2009, the stock price of both the more responsible and less responsible companies fell by approximately the same amount — about 37 percent (In fact, the stock price of the more responsible companies fell by 1.4 percentage points less than the price of the less responsible companies, but that difference isn’t statistically significant for a total sample size of 50 companies.).”
They also cited a recent recent PricewaterhouseCoopers report that found companies that “report sustainability data get better returns on assets than those that don’t.”
What this all means to me is that the more involved your brand, company, employees, etc. can get with a community/cause/social effort, the better chance it has for survival once this financial mess gets cleaned up. Because, on a personal level, people (real, living breathing people – not markets, sectors or demographics) pay attention to that. Like it or lump it, if your company’s edge on the competition is the fact that it did something as great and simple as planting trees on Earth Day, then you will see that much more of an appreciation for your brand and its employees.
So, let’s all use this as sign to try the whole ‘pay it forward’ kinda thing and start thinking beyond ourselves – both in our lives and businesses. Nothing but good things can come of it.