British Business Group India recently held a meeting of Indian busniness leaders to review how CSR can give a great return on investment. Over 170 delegates attended, including 60 CEOs, 15 Chairmen and senior management of both Indian and foreign corporates.
Companies that embrace Corporate Social Responsibility recognise that their social and environmental impacts have to be managed in the same way as their economic and commercial performance. But getting started and putting CSR principles into practice can be difficult and many companies struggle to justify the management of social and environmental affairs in terms of tangible business benefits.
BBG in association with the Collaborating Chambers, the Asia Society and Bombay First, arranged for some of corporate India’s leaders in CSR to join a panel discussion on the topic. Mrs Rajashri Birla – Head CSR Aditya Birla Group, Mr Kishore Chaukar – Managing Director of Tata Industries and Tata Council for Community Initiatives, Mr Ranjit Shahani – Vice Chairman/Managing Director of Novartis, Ms Leena Nair – Executive Director HR Hindustan Unilever, and Mr Yves Guillaume – Chief Executive Officer of EADS India talked the audience through examples of how their businesses have tangibly benefitted from CSR.
The key learning that came out of the evening is that CSR is a strategic business tool and can help a business:
- Get better access to investment capital
- Improve financial performance
- Build its brand and reputation
- Attract and retain quality staff
- Promote a culture of learning and innovation
- Help manage risk more effectively