пожалуйста, возвращайтесь позднее
пожалуйста, возвращайтесь позднее
It is often assumed that firms are simply concerned to maximise profits: that they are not concerned with broader issues of corporate social responsibility. Indeed, many foods of market failure can be attributed directly to business practices that could not be classified as 'socially responsible': advertising campaigns that seek to misinform, or in some way deceive the consumer; monopoly producers exploiting their monopoly position through charging excessively high prices; the conscious decision to ignore water and air pollution limits, knowing that the chances of being caught are slim. To some extent, however, the role of modern business has changed, and society expects business to adhere to certain moral and social principles. Indeed, social responsibility is a key component in many companies' business ethics. Modem businesses often see themselves as more than economic institutions, as they are actively involved in society's social, political and legal environments. As such, all businesses are responsible not only to their shareholders but to all stakeholders. Stakeholders are all those affected by the business's operations: not only shareholders, but workers, customers, suppliers, creditors and people living in the neighbourhood. Given the far-reaching environmental effects of many businesses, stakeholding might extend to the whole of society. In many top corporations, environmental scanning is now an integral part of the planning process. This involves the business surveying changing social and political trends in order to remain in tune with consumer concerns. For example, the general public's growing concern over 'green' issues has significantly influenced many businesses' product development programmes and R&D strategies. The more successful a business is in being able to associate the image of 'environmentally friendly' to a particular product or brand, the more likely it is to enhance its sales or establish a measure of brand loyalty, and thereby to strengthen its competitive position. Several companies in recent years have made great play of their social responsibility. In 2007, Marks and Spencer launched its 'Plan A'. Plan A was a five-year, 100-point plan to tackle some of the biggest challenges facing their business and the world. It was supposed to see them working with their customers and their suppliers to combat climate change, reduce waste, safeguard natural resources, trade ethically and build a healthier nation. They called it Plan A because they believed it was then the only way to do business. • In the very same week that M&S launched Plan A, Tesco unveiled its plans to cut carbon emissions from existing stores workiwide by at least 50 per cent by 2020 and to make the reduction of its carbon footprint 'a central business driver'. To help achieve this, it was commissioning independent research to map the total carbon footprint of its activities across the world. It would also encourage people to buy environmentally friendly products, with more special offers and more of such products in the value range. It was also introducing a carbon labelling system for all its products to help consumers make greener choices. Clearly, M&S, Tesco and the many other companies that are openly committed to sustainability and ethical practices hope that such policies will also improve their profitability. As consumers become more concerned with such issues, so they are likely to favour such companies.