Microsoft (the company to be researched)

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Microsoft (the company to be researched)

Part 1:

  • Involves the “business case” or rationale as to why a company does sustainability and CSR programs. Also, make sure to include the takeaways from the ***Dannon and Clorox cases***. Each case provide good examples of the benefits of CSR. This part of the paper is 45% of final grade.
  • The goal is to assess the costs and, more importantly, the many substantial and strategic benefits of doing sustainability and/or CSR program at a firm. CSR programs relate to good management.
  • It is also important that you use and cite the course readings in completing this part of the assignment. The readings have been carefully selected! ***attached, please be sure to use Dannon and Clorox, but also look at the others**.
  • Sources used from outside the course readings are NOT NECESSARY but can be used. If you use other sources, these must be carefully and correctly cited, and your report should NOT plagiarize or you will fail the course. Any outside sources must be clearly indicated and documented, and not simply by a web address.

Part 2:

  • Involves reading and doing a critique of a company’s sustainability, CSR, or citizenship report.
  • Assess the company’s CSR, sustainability, or citizenship report. Explain the extent to which the company recognizes and takes responsibility for the various social and environmental impacts of its business that you identify.
  • This part of the paper is 20% of your final grade.

Use this Report Format:

A) Executive Summary of one page or less. This is standard in business reports.

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B) Social sustainability: Create a list of the internal benefits of CSR and social sustainability initiatives. This includes the benefits that can accrue to employees, stakeholders, as well as the company in doing these programs. Citing the key readings (not the merely the cases) are very important here, as they discuss many benefits.

For example, one benefit is a charitable donation. The benefit provide a tax deduction, hence the company reaps a financial benefit. It also possibly garners some good will by consumers (if it is reported by the media). There may be other benefits as well that are strategic and related to effective management.

The Dannon case provides as a good example that illustrates some of the internal social sustainability values of CSR programs. Explain why it was not their priority to advertise their CSR activities. Explain how a CSR strategy “fits” the firm’s management culture that values employees.

C) Environmental Sustainability: Discuss the emerging opportunities in the evolving “green markets.” In this part, cite strategic opportunities to pursuing green markets. One part of this would be to summarize the different green markets in the Clorox case and provide the strategic discussion as to how they successfully developed green brands. Summarize the benefits of these efforts for marketing, branding, reputation enhancement, etc.

D) Critique the company CSR report that you read. Explain how the firm construed and defined their specific “responsibility” in the report. Cite any shortcomings and weaknesses. Don’t just parrot what the report states. Be tough. Ask questions…

  • Is the company doing enough?
  • Is it effective?
  • Is the company fully transparent in addressing all social and environmental responsibility concerns?
  • What would you suggest that the company needs to do?

In the above assignment, do NOT forget the benefits that accrue to people, consumers, localities, and other stakeholders as well as the planet. Sustainability is not just about money (or solely an instrumental benefits to the firm’s shareholders alone). Triple bottom line thinking is required. Benefits are financial, social, and environmental, and these benefits are related to each other.

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