The purpose of the Learner’s Log Book (LLB) is to document the achievements of the learner in a central repository that will be considered as evidence on the effectiveness of the learning process. It is a ‘monitoring tool’ that e-tutors use to report on individual learners’ progress and it is a way of ensuring that learners:
- Are engaged in their learning process.
- Avoid plagiarism because learners have to be engaged continuously and the informal assessment can therefore be used to ensure consistency with the main formal assessment.
- Provide e-Tutors with the opportunity to get to know the learners evaluate them and mentor them properly.
- Some templates will reflect whether learners read, whether they understand, whether they assimilate the knowledge, whether they develop inquiry ability, whether they have the potential to conduct critical thinking, and whether they can reflect on the knowledge accumulated by relating to real situations.
The onus is mainly on learners to furnish the required information in the templates after each unit based on the Reading and Analyze Activity. After filling the information in the template they need to e-mail it back to the e-Tutor.
Summary (100-200 Words)
It is rational to state that corporate social responsibility (CSR) is a great challenge for big companies today more than ever. On one side is the media ready to expose, in great detail, any failure by these companies to adhere to CSR. On the other side are governments piling pressure on them to be accountable for their activities’ social consequences? Since different organizations have tried ranking/rating companies using incorrect parameters regarding CSR, these rankings attract a lot of public attention. Provide a summary in your own words on the article you requested to read and analyze in the following space.
However, one point is clear-approach to CSR is so ineffective that the real benefits that the society should gain from corporates are never achieved. There is a need to draw a connection between these approaches to business strategies.
Key Learning Points
Identify the key learning points in the read and analyze assigned activity
- For society to reap full benefits from corporate social responsibility, social issues should be tied closely to companies’ core business objectives. The best way companies can benefit society is through positive contribution to the economy which in turn improves the welfare of the society.
- Instead of categorizing social issues, corporate social agenda should be developed in such a way that they bring together both economic benefits and social benefits at the same time.
- Mostly, aggression that companies have faced from media and activist organizations does not yield any tangible benefits from corporates to society. Companies would take short-term actions just to clear the air instead of long-term objectives.
Relevant Statements To the Session
While you reading, identify the relevant statements to the session and insert them in order in the following space.
Corporate social responsibility has become so important that companies can no longer do business smoothly without addressing this issue critically.
- Efforts to address the issue of CSR have been counterproductive. Society and business are interdependent, though these efforts have placed them against each other. Also, companies are pressured to view CSR in a generic.
- The disconnection between CSR and business strategies has led to the wastage of great opportunities.
- CSR should not be viewed as a constraint, a cost, or a charitable deed but a source of innovation that will benefit society and also an effective tool that will earn companies a competitive advantage.
This is the most important section in your analysis. To complete it successfully, the learner is to consider the following guiding steps:
Present arguments coherently, supported by evidence and facts to substantiate why you may take a particular stance and/ or position towards a particular approach whether against or in support of it;
Capable of bridging the gap between the theory and conceptual work with the application under consideration
Porter and Kramer argue clearly that for CSR to work excellently, it has to be integrated into the business strategies of a company. CSR has to be taken a step further than just capturing media attention to both improving societies, and creating business opportunities. This has to be simultaneous. Donations should improve the welfare of society and create a competitive advantage for the company.
The authors give very classical examples of companies that have taken a stride forward towards this direction and have reaped great fruits: great achievement in doing business. For instance, by training farmers and introducing better technology in different regions in the world, Nestle has earned profits at the same time improving the wellbeing of society. Toyota was on the front line of the green revolution in the 90’s way before anyone anticipated fuel prices to go up to where they are today. They introduced the first hybrid car, an innovation that has made them leaders in the motor industry today.
How could you apply the subject matter from the article in a real business case?
The article explains well that the success of the CSR program depends mainly on how well it is going to be integrated into the business strategy. This means that CSR can be more than a charitable activity; it can be a source of great innovation, competitive advantage, and a new opportunity for society. I believe that Pfizer, the leading pharmaceutical firm in the world, has embraced this principle. The firm is now partnering with various community organizations to enhance spreading the word regarding new patient assistance resources such as ‘Pfizer Helpful Answers’.
What have you learned? Critical thinking is about lessons learned to be drawn from the analysis.
Surviving in today’s ever-changing market dynamics requires having an effective competitive advantage. This can be achieved by the creation of uniquely desirable goods and services in a niche market. Traditional generic strategies that can apply to any products in all industries as explained by Porter and Kramer cannot work effectively anymore. Uniquely structuring your business strategies while developing a CSR program in a specific society is one great opportunity a company can take advantage of.