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Communication in business - Essay Example

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Communication in Business The social responsibility of business is to increase its profits – Milton Friedman A business that makes nothing but money is a poor business. ~Henry Ford The contrasting ideologies, quoted above, are apt in describing the current on-going debate regarding the role of business in society today…
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Communication in business
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Download file to see previous pages While on the other end, the ideology that - social aspect of business is indispensable and an inevitable part of corporate management, is stressed. Where one group argues that the sole purpose of a business is to maximize profits and create value for shareholders, the other support Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) as a part of their corporate agenda. There has been a steady rise in the popularity and significance of CSR and its role in creating an impact on society, and ultimately on the business itself, leading to its adoption and implementation by several corporate giants. Companies across various sectors have taken up social responsibility and their duties towards the society, as a serious and significant part of their corporate agenda (Nelson, 2004). It is evident from the fact that annual report of companies’ now includes sustainability or social reports, where the social activities of a business are proudly displayed alongside the company’s financial reports. Companies today are highly aware of their role in the society and the impact on the everyday lives of its consumers. However, as the role and popularity of CSR continues to rise, an equally significant number of companies, across Europe are steadily moving towards the adoption of the conventional Anglo-Saxon shareholder value model – with greater emphasis on profits, sidelining social responsibility in the process. It is on account of this very reason, that the debates surrounding the purpose and role of business in society, has assumed global significance (The Economist, 2005). The role of business in society: According to some, the main purpose of business is to create wealth and maximize shareholder value, while others consider benefit to society as a part of business. However, regardless of the conflicting ideologies, the fact that business is arguably, the only human activity, which has a far reaching impact on the society, cannot be denied. It has the ability to assemble and accumulate human resources, on a large scale, who are engaged in the production of goods and services for public consumption, while generating profits in the process. Business not only generates profits for the stakeholders and owners but also create value to the society in the form of employment and providing a source of livelihood to millions of people. It is on account of this reason, that the role of business in society is far greater than merely generating profits and hence, companies today have readily incorporated the ethical and moral principles as a part of their corporate responsibility. Companies nowadays, strictly adhere to their social responsibility with the same zest and fervor as they comply in case of their legal obligations. The role of business in society, thus has widened in the recent years and has moved beyond the legal, financial and economic obligations to include social and environmental obligations as well (Blowfield, Murray, 2008). Arguments against corporate social responsibility Milton Friedman subscribed to the classical economic school of thought which contend that business has one and only one responsibility – towards the shareholders and owners and that social issues do not and must not figure on the list of corporate objectives. He further stated that social aspects are taken care of -by and in a free market economy, and in case it fails to do so, then it becomes the responsibility of the government, but business ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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