Corporate Philanthropy - Business Ethics Theories - Contemporary Landscape - Assessment Answer

January 10, 2017
Author : Ashley Simons

Solution Code: 1ADIG

Question:Corporate Philanthropy

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Corporate Philanthropy Assignment

What is the function and the contemporary landscape of corporate philanthropy? In this essay, you will tackle the question of whether corporate philanthropy should be espoused by a greater number of corporations. To do this successfully, you will need to systematically address the question of what exactly corporate philanthropy is, provide examples of current corporate philanthropic practices, and review the various scholarly debates surrounding the effectiveness of corporate philanthropy initiatives. The essay must take into account various theoretical standpoints regarding ethical practice as discussed in the relevant literature.

Conclude the essay with your own remarks on the effectiveness of corporate philanthrop

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Corporate philanthropy refers to the donations made to the non-profit making organizations. The contributions include both profits and other resources of the firms. The other resources included in the definition of corporate philanthropy include time, facilities, equipment and cash and cash equivalents. The services are directly offered by the firms involves. However, the task of making the donations can be delegated to an agency fro convenience purpose. Various enterprises take part in philanthropic donations because of the need to increase an organization’s share value at the stock exchange market. The corporate executives also ensure corporate philanthropy is successive due to their vested interests in the initiative (Aguinis, 2012). The corporate philanthropy programs are usually used to enhance the competitiveness of firms. However, the philanthropy is effective when it is properly executed in sync with the intended objectives.

The corporate philanthropy participation can improve the reputation of an organization. Moreover, the brand of a company can be boost through such social responsibility initiative. The services rendered also boost the living standards of the local communities. In the long-run, the companies are able to create cordial relationships with local leaders and the government at large. Consequently, the company earns the political goodwill in all its major undertakings of business expansions. Additionally, the company undertakings are rarely sabotaged when a firm comprehensively participates in corporate philanthropy. The firms are also provided with an opportunity to take part in the economic growth and development of the underdeveloped regions in a country. According to Hsu (2012),corporate philanthropy makes firms expand their customer base hence boosting their business. In fact, there is a win-win situation when the firms successfully improve certain regions. The quality of the customers is also improved because the relationship between the firm and the customers is based on growth and development of the region.

The customers also favorably rate the company against rival companies. The initiative also attracts qualified personnel because every employee desires a generous employer. Additionally, it is easy for the company to retain most of its employees. Innovation and creativity are fostered because the donations attract investors. The donations attract investors who are willing to partner with the respective companies in the realization of business expansion and extensive community development. In fact, companies that build their reputations through corporate philanthropy are great assets for potential investors in the regions of influence. In the long run, an enterprising culture develops because every company seeks to grow, develop and improve a region which is underdeveloped. The initiative also provides an opportunity for research and development. The donations to the poor in the society translate to high revenue and growth of the company in the future. Vanhammeet al. (2012) asserts that customer satisfaction is also enhanced because donations to the society are a good gesture to any potential customer. A company’s financial performance is improved in the long-run when the time-series model is used for prediction of the impact of corporate philanthropy.

The contemporary landscape of corporate philanthropy

Many companies have had a paradigm shift in social responsibility compliance in the contemporary world. In this regard, various companies are seeking to practice globally accepted ethical values, which qualify them as philanthropists. The new approach to social responsibility is based on the review of the corporate social responsibility. The transformation in the practice of corporate social responsibility has been informed by court rulings. Additionally, the evolution of the image of corporate on a global scale has also informed the transformation of social responsibility practices of firms. The corporate philanthropy is a panacea for flaws in the society (Aguinis, 2012). This is because firm’s area allowed to strongly participating in societal decision making processes in the contemporary setting. Additionally, the identity of the firm as an artificial person is adequate enhances the involvement of the companies in corporate philanthropy practices. The law recognizes companies as persons. However, managing directors serve as agents to the companies in fulfilling their duties in the social sphere.

The contemporary perspective of corporate philanthropy is different from the conservative approach. Corporate social responsibility was an option for companies. However, nowadays companies are legally required to disclose their corporate philanthropy practices. In fact, all companies are usually required to make provisions for corporate philanthropy. This is the reason for the downsizing trend in the US while employees are being laid off. The value attributed to corporate social responsibility is increasing daily and it is manifest in companies like AT&T, IBM, and Levi Strauss (Hsu, 2012). This notwithstanding, t companies are considering the synchronizing their corporate philanthropy programs with company growth and sustainability strategies. The initiative will ensure that the firm does not make donations at the expense of innocent employees. In fact, the laying off of workers is counterproductive because employee lays–off sends a negative signal to the society. The benefits of corporate philanthropy in the contemporary setting exceed the costs of the donations made. This is because the practice leads to low research and development cost, elimination of restrictive government regulatory framework and boost employee productivity.

Examples of current corporate philanthropic practices

There are many examples of corporate philanthropic practices. These include matching gift programs and volunteer grant programs. The matching gifts programs involve the matching of employee charity contributions to the eligible nonprofits. The initiative usually used to the doubling of the donations made by an organization to a non-profit making organization. The volunteer grant programs are abscised on mutual benefit approach. In this case, the companies make contributions to the nonprofits making entities subject to the employee participation in the organization. The bottom-line of such an initiative is to enhance customer service skills. Vanhammeet al. (2012) asserts that employees are able to learn social interaction and efficient communication through corporate philanthropy. The acquired skills are translated into goof customer service in the donating firms. Such orientation is valuable to the companies because it saves the firms of training costs. Most companies are obsessed with corporate philanthropy including Apple, Google, Microsoft, Pepsi Co. And Shell. Apple Company has practiced employee donation matching.

In fact, the company has made more than $50M through such philanthropic practice. The participation has created a wide network of donation to community development projects. The company is the best in the design of technology-savvy electronic items especially iPhones and laptops. Moreover, the company participates in volunteer grant programs. According to Aguinis(2012), the company awards $25 per hour to the respective organizations. Aguinis(2012) adds that Google has also immensely contributed to the charity course. In fact, the company’s 6500 employees volunteered to donate more than 80,000 hours of service to the non-profit making organizations. Google is an international company and it has matched more than $21M in over 9,000 organizations across the world (Aguinis, 2012). The company has extended its corporate philanthropy to bay area giving initiative. The other practices of the company, which manifest its commitment to corporate philanthropy, include code for America, Roberta, programming education gathering and Raspberry Pi. Pepsi Company also offers affordable nutrition and clean water as part of its contribution to philanthropy course. Aguinis(2012) adds that Shell company donations have also created employment for more than 35,000 employees across the world.

Arguments on the effectiveness of corporate philanthropy initiatives

The corporate philanthropy initiative attracts potential employees. The existing employees in the company make informal reports to the potential employees concerning the satisfaction of the company. In fact, the participation in such corporate social responsibility enables the employees’ leadership ability. This is because they are involved in providing guidance to the societal challenges. Additionally, corporate philanthropy boosts the company image. In fact, companies whose public image is tainted can improve the public perception through participation in phenomenal corporate philanthropy projects (Hsu, 2012). Such participation counters the negatively in the public domain. The practice also enhances job satisfaction among the employee hence retention of company employees for a long time. The technology-based companies are usually focused on the corporate philanthropy with an aim of making exploits in various regions. The companies are usually concerned with research-intensive projects. For this reason, participation in such philanthropy provides them a perfect opportunity to achieve their agenda.

The companies also benefit from the service delivery opportunities guaranteed by the non-profit making organizations. The companies’ talented employees get appropriate opportunities to practice their unique skills. In fact, there was a contribution of more than $14.1B to the corporate philanthropy program by all companies. The move was a reflection of the commitment of the companies the world over, to community development and success. This notwithstanding, most companies waste the stakeholders’ wealth citing corporate philanthropy (Vanhammeet al., 2012). The management also has vested interest in the participation in corporate philanthropy. Consequently, there is a lack of unity of purpose whereby managers pursue different goals. In fact, the practice is dubbed theft in some organizations. Shareholders perceive the corporate social responsibility as an opportunity for theft by the managers. For this reason, stakeholders lose faith and trust in the managers who are the legal custodians of their wealth investment in the company. Some organizations management manipulate organization figures to present a favourable view of company performance. Such a practice defeats the core purpose of corporate philanthropy.

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