How important is Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) as a core value for the top companies in the world?
In the book Built to Last, by Jim Collins the results of a six-year research project into what makes enduring great companies is outlined. Collins listed 18 companies identified as “visionaries” .A visionary company is defined as one that is a leader in its industry, is widely admired by knowledgeable businesspeople, made an imprint on the world, had multiple generations of CEO’s, had multiple product/service life cycles, and was founded before 1950. The list of 18 included companies such as Ford, General Electric, Johnson & Johnson, Sony, and Wal-mart.
From 1926 through 1990 these companies outperformed the general stock market by fifteen times.
A key attribute of the findings is that all of these highly profitable companies have sound social values and CSR is an important component of their success. This study shows the relevance of CSR and the importance of strong core values for a successful organization.