Businesses worldwide are increasingly worried about the impact of their business activities on society. They also recognize that the world they live in presents a growing array of demands, pressures and risks that are not signalled through markets or the traditional political processes on which they have relied for a very long time. Thus, many have implemented into their operation the so-called corporate social responsibility (hereinafter also CSR) that aim to balance their operations with the concerns of internal and external stakeholders such as employees, customers, suppliers and business partners, labour unions, local communities, non-governmental organizations (hereinafter also NGOs) and governments. By its very nature CSR is a complex, ...view middle of the document...
e. appropriately grasping and implementing CSR concept.
But whilst many agree that CSR is the right thing for businesses to implement and follow, proponents often grow uncomfortable when explaining the business case for “doing good”. The costs associated with CSR programmes are clear but the positive correlation with better financial performance is often hard to prove. In any case, proponents may argue and are finding a solid ground that the objectives of CSR go beyond short-term economic gains and are mainly focused on a long-term prosperity and sustainability of enterprises.
It is also important to mention a significant role of governments in fostering social justice and environmental protection and ensuring social development. Hence, we have to avoid a tendency to replace role of the government with role of companies. In this respect CSR should be seen as extra opportunity for companies in competitive markets. On the other hand also companies can, and in the author’s opinion should, undeniably complement and supplement the efforts of governments at social and environmental development because these matters concern all – citizens, governments, entrepreneurs, companies, and all kinds of organizations.
For Czech people as well as Czech companies, ethical and corporate social responsibility issues are relatively new, when as less than two decades ago Czechs made the first half-hearted attempts in order to set up their own private businesses and build their own careers as entrepreneurs after a fall of the communist regime at the end of the year 1989. Since then corporate social responsibility has made a great progress and found a solid ground amongst Czech companies and entrepreneurs.