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The Organisation for Responsible Businesses: CSR and Wellbeing

Wellity has become a member of ORB, as a member we are now listed in the Responsible Business Directory!

Sadie is a certified auditor for the Organisation of Responsible Businesses and has been working with them for around 10 years! We are delighted to be working with them!

Corporate Social Responsibility is incredibly important and ORB work really hard making sure businesses have the correct procedures in place.

Their vision is to see thriving, vibrant cities, towns and villages, where small businesses play a vital role in their local communities. Contributing socially and economically and setting an example of ethical and responsible business behaviour in the UK and across the world.

After making it official last week with ORB it got us thinking about how CSR ties in so well with our mission here's why

What is CSR?

Corporate Social Responsibility is a self-regulated business model practiced by organisations and companies. The concept is to make businesses accountable socially for their actions to everyone including themselves. By putting CSR strategies into place, the company is accepting responsibility for their impact on society economically, socially, and environmentally.

CSR was commonly practiced by larger companies in the form of philanthropic gestures towards charitable causes but more recently companies of all different sizes are participating and being held accountable for their impact by customers. A study conducted with 1000 consumers across the UK and the USA in 2018 found that 88% of consumers expect brands to do more. With a mention of companies acknowledging their impact on climate change, pollution, or inequality.1

CSR has many benefits including;

Inspiring innovative ideas – The demand for sustainability calls for companies to create better processes to reduce their waste, use things that are environmentally friendly and reduce energy use!

A great example of this was when Adidas partnered with Parley for the oceans. The aim was to raise awareness and to tackle the plastic pollution in the world’s oceans. All items in the collection were made entirely from plastics found in the ocean!2

Greater employee engagement and retention - A 2015 study done by The Lewis Institute for Social Innovation at Babson College and About IO Sustainability indicates that businesses with a commitment to CSR could see productivity increases by 13% and turnover reductions by up to 50%. The same study concluded that there was a 7.5% increase in those employees’ engagement. 3

Customer engagement – Studies show that consumers are more attracted to companies that care. People actively become invested or emotionally attached to the business based on common interests in making the world a better place. A great example of this that I have personally come across is with ‘In the style’ a clothing brand who regularly collaborate with celebrities. They recently have done a collaboration with Stacey Solomon and having bought various items in the collection have seen that the labels inside the clothes are made from fully recycled material which contains wildflower seeds. The idea is you take the label out of the item and then plant them in the garden. This both allows the customer to add to nature and gets rid of the need for the plastic label.

Making your company CSR compliant does not have to be expensive. This is a misconception, here are some ideas on how to get started;

· Use environmentally friendly materials or products.

· Produce innovative ideas to reduce energy use.

· Make sure your business and any suppliers have ethical business practices.

· You can make donations of money to local charities but also donate your time to them why not offer some volunteers once a month for a few hours?

· Why not see if anyone in the company wants to do an activity for a local charity? A sponsored mud run for example?

· Why not see if your company can get involved in a local park or beach clean-up?

Here at Wellity we focus on improving workplace wellbeing and transforming working cultures. CSR can be a very good way to improve your employees’ wellbeing. In a study conducted by NCVO 2019 the found that 77% of people that took part agreed volunteering had improved their mental health and wellbeing with 53% saying it also improved their physical health!4

Volunteering has many positive benefits that contribute to wellbeing such as team bonding, social interaction and having a sense that you are helping can generate feelings of pride and happiness. It also allows people to potentially use all 5 of the pillars to wellbeing;

1. Connect with people.

2. Be physically active.

3. Learn new skills.

4. Give to others.

5. Pay attention to the present moment.

Not to mention if you can make that volunteering outside in nature. There has been extensive research into how nature and natural environments have a positive impact on a person’s mental health and wellbeing. One study carried out in Japan have shown that just looking at natural landscapes such as forests reduce the release of cortisol by 13.4% while walking in nature has been shown to reduce it by 15.8%.

So, by putting CSR policies in place, you could be improving employee wellbeing, employee engagement and Customer engagement meaning a more lucrative business as well as doing your bit to make the world a better place!

We are a corporate partner of ORB (Organisation for responsible businesses) their mission is to change the world one small business at a time by showing SME’s that ethical and responsible business can be the most profitable and sustainable.

The moto for the company is People, Planet, Profit. I for one can see no downside to getting involved and creating CSR policies within your company, can you?

Our wonderful Ellie Caley was asked to write a blog post for ORB's own website as an introduction on Wellity and CSR here is the link - take a look!


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