The paper "Whether or Not Corporations Can Be a Force for Social Sustainability" is a perfect example of a business assignment. In my opinion, corporations can indeed be a force for social sustainability. People need social sustainability as a way of providing not only equality but also a good quality of life, especially to less fortunate communities. It revolves around identifying and managing both positive and negative impacts on the business. Corporates would not be able to survive without the people in the community. Corporates that enforce social sustainability usually mean that they are doing well businesswise since their products sell more because the company is respected and reputable which means less risk for the company.
I have noted that corporates that tend to ignore social sustainability, open themselves to human rights issues and future liability. Likewise, corporates that implement social sustainability have a high likelihood of tapping into new markets, become innovators for new products or services and are able to attract and retain business partners. I have witnessed the never-ending Nike controversy that has put Nike factories under fire since they have been offering their employees poor working conditions.
Nike Company started in 1964 as imported and distributed Japanese track shoes initially made by Onitsuka Company in Japan. The lack of social sustainability I believe is what also led to the bad reputation of the company. For example, there were accusations of child labor in the soccer balls production in Pakistan. Children between the ages of four and five make almost half the number of soccer balls in the world. An inspection report showed that some employees in the factories suffered respiratory problems due to the high levels of carcinogens.
In addition to this, employees had to work 65 hours per week to earn $10 a week. I share John Mackey’ s sentiments that business leadership is to not only make profits but also produce a positive impact particularly on the stakeholders (Mackey, 2013, p. 34). Thus, Nike was wrong to put profit maximization first before its employees.
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Mackey, J. 2013. What kind of capitalist you want to be. Harvard Business Review, 91 (1), p 34
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Molinsky, A .2012. Code switching between cultures. Harvard Business Review, 90 (1), p 139-143.