Creating a CSE Strategy
There are four types of CSR categories on which CSE is built.
The four areas of CSR are:
- Philanthropic responsibility
- Environmental responsibility
- Ethical responsibility
- Economic responsibility
A good CSE strategy builds on these four CSR categories adding new ones:
You will notice that philanthropic has been removed as CSE is focused on building partnerships and creating good through processes and activities that are not philanthropic in nature. CSE moves away from donating money to solve a social issue. CSE is about partnering and creating innovative solutions that result in some form of societal benefit and overall sustainability.
Creating a business case for CSE can help integrate practice into an organisation’s business growth plan, and ensures the CSE initiative(s) stay on track, hitting the required key performance indicators (KPI) along the way.
Linking the CSE strategy to Corporate Purpose and Values
Linking the CSE strategy to the company’s purpose and values is vital. Once identified this will enable their alignment to the CSE strategy. You can then demonsrate how CSE is contributing to the long-term business strategy and support continued investment in your CSE program.
Aligning the CSE strategy to the Business
There are a number of ways the CSE strategy can integrate into business strategy. It depends on the company’s needs, goals and often its core business. Examine the company’s strategic goals to help you shape the CSE strategy, for example, is there an internal goal to have an impact, engage or retain employees, or engage consumers.
CSE can help with employee retention and employer branding, so can be aligned with the Human Resources strategy. It’s also shown to increase customer retention and loyalty as explored in the previous module. It can therefore integrate into the sales growth strategy or customer success strategy.
If the business is seeking investment, current trends indicate that companies with global sustainable development strategies are more likely to win investment opportunities.
The truth is, CSE can actively help a business work toward a larger profit margin while doing good for society; it’s a win-win.
Collaborate to create a CSE Strategy
Engage everyone in the organisation to help create the CSE strategy. Engaging employees who are interested is more productive than the leadership team defining the strategy on their own. However, the project certainly needs one core manager to lead the way, assign responsibilities and ensure everyone stays on track.
Some companies have a CSR department, and some assign CSR to Human Resources teams or Office Managers. Depending on the goals of using CSE, it can also be the responsibility of marketing or communications teams.
CSR is now a “CEO-level business strategy—defining the organization’s very identity” and CSE takes a step beyond CSR, which fosters entrepreneurial and innovation within the organisation as it aims to help sustain or develop others as they strive to address pressing social issues.