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Consumer Loyalty Is Driven By ‘Trust’

Consumer Loyalty Is Driven By ‘Trust’
Consumer Loyalty Is Driven By ‘#Trust’ One of my most favorite things to say is that people hire brands that they know, like, and trust. Think about it. How do you feel about your insurance man, or the guy who sold you your last car? In all of our lives, there is a salesman that we feel connected to, or a brand that is familiar to us. Making a purchase isn’t just something that we do, it is something that we experience. Managing Brand Equity: Capitalizing on the Value of a Brand Name  When it comes to business and sales, we start to look at things from a different perspective. How do we get our customers to know, like, and trust us? In a recent report, Havas Media ranked the world’s most meaningful brands. Topping the list were companies like IKEA, Google, #Nestle, Danone, Leroy-Merlin, Samsung, Microsoft, Sony, and Unilever. Major brands to be sure, but what is it exactly that makes them so meaningful? Which brands ranked the highest? Ikea Google Nestle Danone Leroy-Merlin Samsung Microsoft Sony Unilever Bimbo Garrett Moon 90% of Americans more likely to trust brands that back #social causes If your brand doesn’t support social causes, it’s missing out on a huge audience. Consumers don’t just like when companies incorporate social good into their business models — they’ve come to expect it, whether it’s through #corporate social responsibility (CSR), cause marketing or “good” content. In fact, 90% of Americans say they’re more likely to trust and stay loyal to companies that actively try to make a difference. #Customer Loyalty: How to Earn It, How to Keep It  Studies also show that 88% of consumers would buy a product with a social or environmental benefit, and a surprising 84% would tell friends and family about a company’s CSR efforts. Brands can tap into this consumer base through original content and social media. After all, 64% of millennials use social media to address companies about social and environmental issues, and 36% of consumers say they mainly share content to promote the causes they care about. But your company needs to be genuine. Don’t underestimate your consumers’ intelligence by simply jumping on this bandwagon. “Causewashing” is a serious issue, and odds are your consumers will smell it a mile away. Matt Petronzio Google Beats Apple Apple is out, Google is in. Google has usurped Apple—leader for three years in a row—on the 2014 BrandZ Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brand ranking, out today. It has grown 40 percent since last year and has a #brand value of $159 billion. So why and how did Google bump Apple? “It’s a story about two hugely #successful technology companies,” said Oscar Yuan, VP at Millward Brown Optimor. “Apple’s been known for earth-shattering, category-creating, revolutionary products. And I would say just recently Apple’s innovations have been more evolutionary than revolutionary. I think that may have played a little bit in the drop from first to second,” he said. “Google has been doing just the opposite—they’ve been organizing the world’s information and putting it at your fingertips. Even to things as aggressive as GoogleX—they are making WiFi available globally by putting satellites tied to balloons over the earth. [That kind of innovation] does enormous things for the brand—it’s seen as a making-dreams-come-true-type company, and that certainly helps their brand value,” Yuan said. Jennifer Rooney Related Posts: CSR How to Build Brand Value of Businesses? Does Your Company Have What it Takes to be a...
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Strategic Change-Beyond the Boxes

Strategic Change-Beyond the Boxes
Strategic Change-Beyond the Boxes The major focus of corporate strategy is to formulate a method by which any business can adapt to a changing environment enabling to improve its competitive advantage. The corporate strategy theory presents us with the following questions: Where are we now? Where do we want to be? How do we get there? Corporate Self-Analysis The logic is to examine the current status of the business. Areas that come under this self-analysis purview include: Is the business aware of who its stake-holders are? If you are not going to engage your customers or users, then your business becomes product-centric and not cutomer-centric. What are the long-term objectives of your concern? Without a definitive vision how will you ever design and achieve your short-term goals! Does your company have a mission statement? See the mission statement of Mc.Donalds – McDonald’s brand mission is to be our customers’ favorite place and way to eat and drink. Our worldwide operations are aligned around a global strategy called the Plan to Win, which center on an exceptional customer experience – People, Products, Place, Price and Promotion. What are your present business strategies? If your company’s presence is not felt in the market (forget being a market leader always, though that would be the dream spot of all big corporate companies), or your product is not selling by itself, then there has some serious thinking to be done about your present strategies. Focus on what went wrong, try to get inspired by your competitors’ moves (Ha! Its not copying my friend! ), gear up your advertising department to reach the audience. Also try to find out if there are any black sheep in your stay leaking confidential statistics and strategic business moves. Are they simple to understand and communicate to the workforce? If you are not able to pitch your idea to your workforce in a matter of just 15 minutes, then it is very well clear that you are not clear about what you’ve conceptualized. What is the marketplace scenario? Is it in the growth/decline phase? Sometimes it is better to start a business at bad times. Hiring will be easy, cost will be under control and you can experiment boldly because you have nothing to lose. Who might be your biggest competitors? This takes serious effort and planning and ask your core team to do their home-work properly. “Understand that a competitor is created because you are weak”. Review your business internally, look at your business-does it support growth and adaptability to change? This depends upon the leader who serves as the biggest inspiration for people down the line. The culture he has developed plays a big role in deciding this aspect wherein flexibility and employee engagement are part and parcel of it. How effective are your production processes? How well do sales/personnel/marketing/finance sections perform? How well does the business control its internal resources? This is a separate entity and the most crucial element of an enterprise. Expansion in accordance with the demand on one side and keeping up with the technology advance on the other side and what about the third side – the “WORKFORCE” in caps! Tending to the employee morale is the biggest challenge of modern times. HR MANAGERS have to have up-to-date knowledge on the labor laws and government policies on the security aspects of employees. A small case study on the Fast Food Giant McDonalds: U.S. CMO Deborah Wahl, who joined the fast food giant McDonalds company in early 2014, said in a video about the brand refresh that the company will move from a philosophy of “billions served” — a line featured on...
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Does Your Company Have What it Takes to be a Leader-2

Does Your Company Have What it Takes to be a Leader-2
Does Your Company Have What it takes to be a leader Corporations that are considered leaders in terms of business performance take a common approach to CSR. The blueprint for how corporations can maximize their investments in CSR contain five essential ingredients- Business-based social purpose Clear theory of change Quality and depth of information Concentrated effort, and Partnering with experts.What it Takes to be a Leader-2 1. Business-based social purpose: There have been too many examples of CSR programs that ignore business fundamentals. Leadership-level CSR programs always directly reflect what the business is and what it does. An “innovative CSR initiative” can emphasize the company’s business purpose and flawlessly leverage its operational competencies. The social purpose of a business is aligned with and supports social issues in a way that is consistent with the unique culture and character of the business. Srinivasan Services Trust is a social arm of Sundaram Clayton Limited and TVS Motor company established in 1996 for charitable purposes. The company focuses on improving health, education, women’s empowerment, infrastructure and environment that would bring about changes in the lives of people in a community. 2. Clear theory of change: CSR is becoming indispensable. On the one hand, that’s good news because it proves its business value. On the other hand, it’s getting harder to discriminate one company’s efforts from another’s. CSR leaders develop branded approaches to drive measurable social change. Starbucks Coffee has 8,000 stores, in 34 countries that sell to 30 million customers each week has adopted an unique CSR approach. Their mission is to provide the highest quality coffee in an environment that is consistent worldwide and support the sustainability of their farmers. Starbucks could be considered compliant and even proactive in their responsibilities to stakeholders. They purchase coffee in 20-30 countries per year, as their buying agents spend 240/365 days per year on the road searching for the best coffee farms and developing relationships with customers. It involves mutually agreed upon fair pricing, economic transparency, socially responsible buying, and environmentally friendly expectations. These standards protect the farmer’s business and ensure that Starbucks can support their ethical branding with practices that respect the environment. 3. Quality and depth of information: Merely pin-pointing social priorities for community investment is not adequate. Leadership comes from providing employees, customers and external stakeholders with a significant depth of information about the social issue through authentic research, white papers, videos, stories, social media, and so on. Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation or the Gates Foundation is one of the largest private foundations in the world, founded by Bill and Melinda Gates. It was launched in 2000 and is said to be the largest transparently operated private foundation in the world. Guided by the belief that ‘all lives have equal value’, Bill Gates and his wife  Melinda Gates the co-chairs explain about their work and their commitment in supporting the government in reaching India’s most vulnerable communities with the services they need to live healthy and productive lives. The Department of Biotechnology (DBT) under the Ministry of Science and Technology of the Government of India and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in collaboration with India’s Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council (BIRAC) launched a call for proposals as part of Grand Challenges India to reinvent the toilet. The Department of Biotechnology and the Gates Foundation will each invest US$1 million to support Indian investigators to drive research, development, and production of the “next generation toilet.” 4. Concentrated effort: Leadership is shown by corporations that direct their efforts on one social issue and align all their internal and external resources with this issue. 5. Partnering with experts: Leadership entails showing a high degree of credibility. This is best done through...
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Does your company have what it takes to be a leader-1

Does your company have what it takes to be a leader-1
What it takes to be a Leader What is #Corporate Social Responsibility? High performance is generally measured against key business imperatives including #competitive advantage, #sales, #talent management, #operational efficiency, #return on investment and profitability. It is no longer adequate for a corporation to revel in economic prosperity in isolation from those agents impacted by its actions. Today, a new element of leadership is making an intense difference in weighing  business performance: Corporate Social Responsibility. The late 1990s and the early 2000s saw an uptake in businesses giving proceeds or providing volunteers to causes related to their brands. Some called it “corporate social responsibility”; others called it “corporate #philanthropy” or “#corporate citizenship.” Regardless of its title, it was a way for business to increase visibility while raising funds for good. The spotlight is on both increasing the firm’s bottom line and being a good corporate citizen. Keeping abreast of global trends and remaining committed to financial obligations to deliver both private and public benefits have compelled organizations to restructure their frameworks, rules, and business models. Where does the roots of CSR lie? Although the #roots of CSR lie in altruistic activities (such as donations, charity, relief work, etc.) of corporations, globally, the concept of CSR has evolved and now embraces all allied concepts such as triple bottom line, corporate citizenship, philanthropy, #strategic philanthropy, #shared value, #corporate sustainability and business responsibility. You might be wondering what is “Triple bottom line?” (abbreviated as TBL or 3BL) – The term coined by John Elkington in 1994,  incorporates the notion of sustainability into business decisions. The TBL is an #accounting framework with three dimensions: social, environmental (or ecological) and financial. “A plethora of research points to a majority of stakeholders agreeing that CSR is a ‘must do’,” and  67% of consumers say they are more likely to buy products and services from a company if they know it supported good causes. Smart Corporations: As a key component in business #strategy and execution, CSR is playing a crucial role in helping organizations to be seen as leaders. Smart corporations are allocating increasing internal resources to CSR investments that include clear objectives and furnish measurable social outcomes. India is a country of multitude contradictions. On the one hand, it has grown to be one of the major economies in the world, and an increasingly important player in the emerging global order, on the other hand, it is still home to the largest number of people living in absolute poverty (even if the proportion of poor people has decreased) and the largest number of malnourished children. This is the sad state of uneven distribution of the benefits of growth which many believe, is the root cause of social unrest. Companies too have been the target of those disconcerted by this lop-sided development and as a result, their contributions to society are under severe scrutiny. Many companies have been astute to sense this development, and have responded proactively while others have done so only when advocated. What it takes to be a Leader-2...
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Tactics or Strategy

Tactics or Strategy
Tactics or Strategy – Ethical Considerations Give a man a fish everyday, his appetite is sated. Teach him how to fish; you have fulfilled his appetite for an entire life time. This is strategy. To make it work, to make the impossible, possible. There is no drawn out template for success or for that matter strategy. But both of them go together when the right strategy is used at the right time and you can bang on your target. Neither the same strategy fits the bill for everybody. Your smart approach to that particular situation backed up by your knowledge and experience does the magic. It cannot be taught, it comes from within when the situation warrants for action. It is more like “Survival of the fittest”, if you want to retain your niche in this business world you act fast and think wise. Tactics: How many of you are bold enough to think differently to make a difference, to make others feel your presence. Never implement tactics which is short lived and don’t make your presence felt either by imitation or by unethical competitor criticism. That will paint a greasy picture on your firm. That is of course strategy but cheap strategy. But always be on the run to know your competitors’ weaknesses and shortcomings which will make you improve your product or service. That is acceptable business practice where competitor spying gives us an edge in terms of identifying unexploited niches of the market. Resort to  Constructive Strategies: Strategies must always be constructive and it assures success in the long run. Tactics or gimmicks will prove to be fruitful only for a short while and that is not your aim also. Will you be satisfied if you are able to sell your product or service as hot cakes only for a season! Is that going to cover your profit margin for the entire accounting year? True, strategies are always associated with making profits, boosting up the sales, for retaining the market share and maximizing the share value. But it should also make your business perennial and viable. Strategic Framework: Many of us forget that strategies are applicable in every activity of a firm that forms a compact framework which gives your business a solid foundation upon which you can build your empire of success without looking back. Right from framing your vision, mission, policies, procedures and programmes including recruitment, selection, training, evaluation and empowering your employees, strategies play their role in giving clarity and direction to the firm.  Long-Term Planning: Although strategies are meant for long term planning, a periodic review and appraisal of the company’s strategies to all the employees concerned is a must to keep them informed. Strategies are secrets but not to the employees of your organization. Strategies are born out of compulsion, a compulsion to survive in the market and have an edge over others. So they must be meticulously planned after brain storming sessions and expert consultations. Sometimes even a small idea suggested by one of your employees might become the basis for a turnkey operation. So keep your eyes and ears open and also be open minded to accept ideas even from the lowest level as they are your pillars of strength and they know the pulse of the market and people better. Strategic Action Plans: Success is not a cake walk, it has to be achieved with great hardships and the taste of success will be sweeter. Strategies are formulated in every step of your business plan, remember it is an ongoing process; you have to revitalize your strategies every now and then to be in the scene, to make...
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