Embrace CSR: a go-to guide for Pakistani businesses.

 
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Byline: Ammar Muzaffar

While running a business entails taking care of a hefty amount of responsibilities - from employee wellness to shareholder interests - another factor that business owners need to pay adequate attention to is CSR or Corporate Social Responsibility. CSR can be defined as "the commitment of businesses to work ethically and contribute to economic development while improving the quality of life of the workforce and their families as well as of the local community and society at large".

Therefore, Corporate Social Responsibility is every business's responsibility to operate in a sustainable and ethical way and be mindful of its social and environmental impacts. This usually involves a careful consideration of the community, human rights, society and the environment in which the business operates. The importance of CSR in a company's operations can't be stressed enough. It's a healthy practice for businesses which not only attracts stakeholders but also customers.

According to the Cone Communications/Ebiquity Global CSR study of 2015, 91% of consumers all over the world expect businesses to act ethically and responsibly and to actively participate in activities that address environmental and societal issues. Moreover, approximately 84% consumers said they seek responsible products while shopping. The statistics show that customers pay great attention to businesses that are mindful of their social responsibility and who not only care about their own profits but of the society at large.

As Pakistan continues to grow in regard to the number of businesses and SMEs, greater importance is placed on their CSR practices and the impact they have on the society and the environment.

Although it's often argued that a majority of businesses in Pakistan lack CSR practices, there exist companies that continue to thrive while supporting the society and building a brighter...

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