3 points made by Michael Porter at Harvard
CSV – Corporate Share Value is a concept developed by Michael Porter and his colleagues at Harvard University. CSR is of course – Corporate Social Responsibility.
According to Porter CSR is all about:
- Being responsible.
- Doing no harm.
- Redistributing money.
It is often essential, but rarely commercial in its own right – although it may support commercial activities through public relations value.
According to Porter CSV is all about:
- Rethinking capitalism.
- Exploiting opportunities.
- Creating value.
In essence CSV involves corporations applying capitalism thinking and approached to generating profits, and indeed maximising profits by addressing issues of social consequence, such as:
- Reducing waste in a way that generated commercial profits.
- Making healthy food that can sell at a commercial profit.
- Collaborating with suppliers to generate better returns for all.
Again, according to Porter, this can involve:
- Products that address consumer needs.
- Alternative approaches to the value chain.
- Impacting directly on the business eco system.
It makes good sense, but:
- Is it really a new approach?
- Is this not what business is going already?
- Is this just window dressing designed to make business look better?
I certainly like the idea of CSV, but:
- I am not sure it is anything new (business is already ceasing on opportunities).
- I am not sure it will decrease the need for CSR. ( a point Porter would agree with).
- I am sure that it can be part of an ethical approach to business.
- CSV is on the agenda.
- CSR is alive and well.
- An ethical approach to business will become increasingly important.