A company’s corporate citizenship impact extends beyond its headquarters. To address environmental, social, and governance issues effectively, CSR professionals today must look beyond their own operations and deep into their supply chain. How and where are materials sourced? How are the components of products developed? What are the environmental and human rights ramifications of those processes? Issues as serious as child labor, conflict minerals, and climate change can only be effectively tackled when a company’s commitments to corporate citizenship and reporting are adopted by their suppliers and partners.
We’ve all heard it before: “Corporate responsibility is not as important in B2B companies!” “B2B companies don’t have to talk about their corporate citizenship”, or even, “we can’t build our brand reputation with CSR like a B2C company can.”
We know that business to business companies do face unique challenges in communicating their corporate citizenship efforts. It is particularly challenging to focus communication on what your clients and main constituents most want to know. Unlike your B2C counterparts, your clients all have their own clients and corporate citizenship priorities to honor. So how can B2B companies strike the balance between the interesting story and the story their clients want to hear? Is anyone even listening?