CSR in 2011: My Prediction

Jan 6, 2011 8:41 PM ET

Alice Korngold's Blog

Now entering its third decade, CSR is at last stepping into the spotlight. CSR has moved from the corporate cubicle to the board room, onto the curricula of the world’s most prestigious MBA programs, and the agendas of the most prominent global CEO gatherings. Not having embarrassed myself with my 2010 forecast, here are my thoughts about CSR in 2011.

In 2011, it will become clearer that the most effective way to enlist companies in CSR is to demonstrate the benefits of CSR to companies as well as communities – the win-win. Telling companies that they should do something, especially on moral grounds, is not a highly effective way to motivate deeply committed action, especially when the moral case to spend shareholder money is debatable. Confession: I have always balked at the term “responsibility” in CSR, since many have seen the term responsibility as a should rather than the win-win. I have used and favor the term Leveraging Good Will.

I believe that in 2011 we will see more companies incorporating CSR business strategies because the win-win to business as well as the community will become more evident; there will be a continued move away from the should reason for involvement. This trend is part of larger social forces. These include, among others:

For continuation, see here on Fast Company...http://bit.ly/e86ksN

Korngold Consulting LLC assists corporations in building fully integrated, high-impact CSR strategies, including leadership development through nonprofit board service.  Korngold Consulting trains and places business executives on nonprofit boards, and consults to nonprofit boards and leaders to strengthen governance for financial and strategic success.