CSR allows a firm to have a positive impact on society by efficiently managing their business procedures. It means firms have to be socially responsible and not only care about profitability. This type of action can give the brand and the firm a good image and reputation and can lead to potential built up of brand loyal customers, as they will fell more comfortable to buy the product knowing it will also lead to a positive impact.
In order to be known as a responsible CSR, Toyota has gone through several procedures, their CSR document states that, they only “seek growth by symbiosis with stakeholders, including customers, employees, shareholders, business partners and society at large. ” They have taken some steps towards being a good CSR for example: “The Toyota Fund for Europe provides seed funding and gives direction to social contributions within the company.
Funded projects include: Eco Driving training in Belgium, Iceland, Norway, Spain and the United Kingdom, Reforestation activities by Toyota Spain, Pan-European road safety courses for young people. ” The following statement was made on Toyota’s website, but my research has shown me that so far all the countries, in which Toyota’s has benefited with their CSR strategy, are primary target for expansion, so a question is raised: Are they looking for grants and encouragement from the government? Why haven’t Toyota helped any starving third world country?.
They answer that by saying their main intention is to help their customers and consumers with in the society their stand in, and a lot of their customers and potential customers are in European countries, and as they don’t have any plan expand to Africa or any other undeveloped country they are not socially responsible for them. How ever the quietly recent Crisis with Toyota Evidently shows, they tried to increase productivity and profitability by outsourcing and opening up factories in third world countries, and as a result they failed TQM (total quality management) and they had many product recalls.
This forces me to think Toyota does not care about being socially responsible but they care about their brand image and they try use CSR as an excuse to improve their image. Another example of this can be seen in the “Morocco” case. Toyota stated that they will create 300 schools in morocco every year from 2011 to fight illiteracy. However after changing their decision to not expanding in to the country, they stopped producing leaflets and terminated their campaign leaving more that 57 unfinished school sites in the country.
No further issue has been stated regarding that. In conclusion I think there are two ways to look at the way in which Toyota achieves its CSR. From business perspective: The definition of CSR is given as being able to have a positive impact on the society in which they do business in. from this point because Toyota has mass market shares in certain countries they maintain their image by actively supporting those communities, one of the main reasons is to preserve potential customers, and sustain profitability.
From Analyst perspective: Any analyst (looool not that I’m a business analyst) can clearly see that Toyota and a lot of MNC’s generally don’t care about being socially responsible, the only reason they reinforce that image is to save their brand reputation. Or convince government for their expansion plans; As a result their communities are benefiting however this may cause suffering to societies who generally need more help.