What mean CSR and the triple bottom line really for today's businesses and future managers
During her third year at Van Hall Larenstein, Sabine Waschull had the opportunity to apply her newly gained knowledge to a real life sustainability project. The Friesian, a dairy consultancy company, advising and assisting dairy producing and processing companies in various business areas, approached students of Van Hall Larenstein and informed them that the company is very aware of, but up until now, not active in the field of Corporate Social Responsibility.
'The company asked us to assess in what way they could implement it into their processes. They feel that the society, in general, has an increasing interest in CSR and companies have to start thinking about their own impact and how they can contribute. After all, CSR can give companies a competitive edge which consequently can lead to above average returns. In a group of five we analysed the company and conducted interviews with employees after what we decided that the Friesian does lack a clearly defined CSR policy.'
Therefore, the students saw it as an essential step for The Friesian to introduce a CSR policy including CSR mission, vision as well as code of ethics throughout the organization that, together with their current strategy, synergies and brings value to the organisation. 'The Friesian is already involved in CSR activities such as sustainable farming, and has ethical standards that it upholds but does not communicate its commitment to stakeholders,' Sabine says.
The policy that the students developed will be a push in the right direction and the base for further CSR activities. 'This very interesting project for a real company gave an insight into what CSR and the triple bottom line really means and how challenging and important it is for today's businesses and future managers.'