New Balance Needs an Integrated CSR Strategy
New Balance is a company that has long been seen as a leader in the area of corporate social responsibility (CSR). In recent years, however, the company has been facing some strategic hiccups in this area. The main problem seems to be a lack of clarity about what responsible leadership or CSR actually means. This has led to a scattered approach to CSR, with New Balance sometimes seeming to be more focused on doing good deeds than on creating a sustainable and integrated strategy. This paper will argue that New Balance needs to develop an integrated CSR strategy in order to regain its position as a leader in this important area.
2. What is Corporate Social Responsibility?
Before discussing the need for an integrated CSR strategy at New Balance, it is important to first define what exactly corporate social responsibility is. There is no one universally accepted definition of CSR, but it can generally be described as the voluntary commitment of companies to take actions that benefit society ( Carroll, 1979). These actions can take many different forms, but often include initiatives such as environmental protection, support for local communities, and promoting employee health and wellbeing. The motive behind these actions can vary, but they are often undertaken in order to improve the image of the company or to create a competitive advantage ( Porter & Kramer, 2006).
3. Corporate Social Responsibility at New Balance
New Balance has a strong history of engaging in CSR activities. Some notable examples include the company’s support for local communities through initiatives such as the New Balance Foundation and its efforts to reduce its environmental impact through programs like Re-Fresh Reuse Recycle. In recent years, however, New Balance has been facing some challenges in the area of CSR. One problem is that there seems to be a lack of clarity about what CSR actually means for the company. This has led to a scattered approach, with different departments often working on their own initiatives without much coordination. Another issue is that New Balance has not been effective at communicating its CSR activities to the outside world. As a result, the company’s reputation in this area has suffered and it is no longer seen as a leader in CSR.
4. The Need for an Integrated Strategy
The main problem facing New Balance’s CSR efforts is that they are not part of an integrated strategy. An integrated strategy would involve setting clear goals for CSR activities and then developing a plan for achieving those goals. This plan would need to take into account all aspects of the business, from product development and manufacturing to marketing and sales. It would also need to be communicated effectively both within the company and to the outside world. Without an integrated strategy, New Balance’s CSR efforts are likely to continue to be scattered and ineffective.
5. Developing an Integrated Strategy
Developing an integrated CSR strategy will require New Balance to take several steps, including setting goals, communicating corporate social responsibility, and improving the image of the company.
– Setting Goals: The first step in developing an integrated CSR strategy is setting clear goals for what you want to achieve. These goals should be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART). They should also be aligned with the company’s business strategy. Once you have set your goals, you need to develop a plan for how you are going to achieve them. This plan should take into account all aspects of the business and should be communicated to all employees.
– Communicating Corporate Social Responsibility: The second step is to communicate your CSR activities to the outside world. This can be done through a variety of channels, including the media, social media, and events. It is important to make sure that your communication is clear and consistent. You also need to make sure that you are communicating the results of your CSR activities, not just the activities themselves.
– Improving the Image of the Company: The third step is to improve the image of the company. This can be done by highlighting the positive impacts of your CSR activities and by addressing any negative perceptions of the company. You can also improve your image by being more transparent about your CSR activities and by involving employees in these activities.
In conclusion, New Balance needs to develop an integrated CSR strategy in order to regain its position as a leader in this important area. An integrated strategy will involve setting clear goals for CSR activities and then developing a plan for achieving those goals. This plan should take into account all aspects of the business and should be communicated effectively both within the company and to the outside world. Improving the image of the company will also be important. By taking these steps, New Balance will be able to create a sustainable and integrated approach to CSR that will benefit both the company and society as a whole.