CSR activities – implement them effectively

how to conduct effective CSR activities

In recent years, a very strong development of the corporate social responsibility trend can be observed. This shows that entrepreneurs are becoming more and more aware, which is undoubtedly a huge plus! Although in Poland the term CSR is becoming more and more popular every year, many companies and organizations are still not fully aware of how important this issue is for every business. What is worth knowing about corporate social responsibility and how to conduct effective CSR activities?

What will you learn from the article?

More and more Polish companies are aware of the role they play in society, not limiting their activities only to generating profits. Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is becoming not just a fashionable slogan, but a real strategy influencing the company's image, its profits and relationships with customers and employees. In this article, we will look at the definition of CSR activities, discuss why they are so important in the context of modern business, and show how you can effectively implement a CSR strategy within the company.

We will also present the benefits of introducing corporate social responsibility standards and cite inspiring examples of companies that have achieved success by placing great emphasis on CSR activities. Are you wondering how to improve the image of your company and stand out on the market? Are you looking for ways to effectively manage your CSR strategy? This text will provide you with valuable tips and inspiration to introduce positive changes as part of your CSR activities.


CSR activities - definition

CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) is in other words corporate social responsibility - both for decisions and actions that have an impact on society and the environment. This term refers to the company's policy and the conduct of it in accordance with ethical principles. It means a well-thought-out strategy of involvement in the development of the aforementioned society and environment - both local and global, as well as in supporting the company's employees. Even though running a socially responsible business is not necessary, it brings a lot of benefits both for the company and the environment. It is also worth remembering that CSR activities in the company should be consistent with communication strategy enterprises, well planned and long-term.

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It is impossible to list specific CSR activities. There are as many activities that enterprises can undertake as there are many different organizations. You can only use the proposals that are on the Internet or in scientific publications. In addition, CSR activities evolve, just like the world that surrounds us. It is enough to look at the current situation and the coronavirus pandemic, which has revolutionized CSR activities around the world.

Ratajczak, Wołoszyn and Stawicka in "The concept of CSR in the aspect of employees on the example of agribusiness enterprises from the Masovian Voivodeship" highlighted human resources management as one of the examples of socially responsible activities.

These activities include: "striving to maintain existing and creating new jobs, creating opportunities for promotion and development of employees, supported by an appropriate motivation system, activating employees, favoring the achievement of their individual goals, supporting cooperation, commitment, teamwork and employee participation. " These activities relate to external and internal personnel policy, which is extremely important in the organization.

CSR activities

Griffin in "Fundamentals of organization management", based on his model of three areas of corporate social responsibility, indicates CSR activities related to general social well-being: "philanthropic activities, support for social and cultural organizations, activities to support political equality, fight against pathologies of the functioning of states. "

Next CSR activities from a completely different area are mentioned by Sam Black in "Public Relations". It shows that "As part of CSR, the enterprise may support local institutions, support them, and promote educational initiatives for the inhabitants of the territory in which it operates. Artistic activities emphasizing the value of the region's culture are also important. "

CSR activities - quotes

CSR activities related to the natural environment, which is the basic area of the organization's social responsibility, are very important. Wiesław Łukasiński in "The ecological aspect in the concept of corporate social responsibility" indicates that "activities in the field of environmental protection should, in the first place, be based on such functioning of the entity that will reduce the harmful impact on the environment in the phase of production, normal operation and disposal of waste. " Organizations should implement measures to protect the environment, e.g. implement an environmental policy, properly manage raw materials, educate their employees about ecology, as well as implement ecological technological processes.

Still other CSR activities were proposed by the Polish Agency for Enterprise Development (PARP). Apart from those mentioned above, of course, she mentioned, inter alia: "activities as part of social campaigns that enable enterprises to influence the attitudes of society through the media. Such campaigns are aimed at helping those in need or increasing public awareness on a specific topic. " PARP also mentioned "employee volunteering, supply chain management and product labeling (informing the customer about the environmental aspects of the product).

All of the above CSR activities are just some of the examples that can be found among various companies. The richness of this topic shows how important an element of the organization's activity is the implementation of socially responsible activities.

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How can you implement the CSR strategy inside the company?

Implementation of the CSR strategy outside would not be possible without responsible implementation inside the company. Therefore, it is worth starting activities related to corporate social responsibility with internal communication. It includes that between employees as well as between the employer and employees. It is the employees who create the image of the company outside. Hence, any changes within CSR should start with them. They should be aware of what idea they are focused on and how they are building it. What's more, employees should also be sure that their commitment, experience and skills are something very valuable for the company.

How to implement CSR activities within the company? First of all, pro-employment practices, e.g. in the form of enabling employees to work remotely, openness to flexible working hours or reduced employment, as well as support for pregnant women and young mothers. Each employee should also have equal opportunities for development and access to education, training or support in the field of postgraduate studies. Such activities work to the benefit of both employees and the employer. The former are then much more involved and identify with the company more strongly.

Effective CSR it most certainly also has a big influence on employer branding. The company's reputation is of measurable importance on the market. Every business owner should aim to be a better employer.

An appropriate CSR strategy is therefore essential. Job seekers often pay a lot of attention to this issue and often even put it above the amount of salary.

CSR activities

How to effectively conduct CSR activities?

First of all, it is worth remembering that CSR activities should be consistent with the planned activities in the field public relations. The task of both is to increase the value of the company and to improve its competitiveness on the market. How can you implement the assumptions related to corporate social responsibility and which of them are the most effective? One of the most common activities is socially responsible engagement. What does it mean? First of all, social campaigns and educational programs, e.g. concerning health protection or equal opportunities for the development of children and adolescents from various backgrounds. Another way a company can become socially involved is through employee volunteering as well as creating projects aimed at local communities.

It is also worth paying attention to CSR activities addressed to the company's business partners or its consumers. Building such relationships affects trust and strengthens the position on the market. How to implement such actions? For example, by organizing training in customer relations, strategy development, sales management or the proper use of commercial space.

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Thirdly, pro-environmental activities are very popular activities in the field of CSR, which significantly affect trust in the company and customer loyalty towards it. It can even be said that it is a requirement of every company today, and not just a certain trend that is worth adjusting to. Such actions assume, for example, the reduction of exhaust emissions or the amount of waste generated by appropriate optimization of production processes. Smaller-scale activities are also important, which assume the reduction of water, electricity or paper consumption, as well as reliable waste segregation.

How to plan a CSR strategy management strategy?

Planning a CSR strategy management strategy involves several key steps:

Analysis: Start with a detailed analysis of your organization, identifying its values, goals and areas where CSR activities can be introduced. Also conduct an analysis of the business environment, including competition, social trends and stakeholder expectations.

Defining goals: define clear goals you want to achieve through your CSR strategy. Make sure they are aligned with the organization's mission, values and long-term goals.

Choice of actions: based on the analysis and defined goals, select specific CSR activities that will be implemented by the company. These may include activities related to environmental protection, supporting the local community, or improving working conditions in the company.

Resources and budget: determine the necessary resources to implement the CSR strategy, including financial, human and time. Make sure budget is appropriately allocated to activities and that you have the necessary internal support.

Monitoring and evaluation: establish a system for monitoring progress in implementing the CSR strategy and methods for assessing its effectiveness. Analyze your results regularly and adjust your strategy as needed to ensure you achieve your goals.

CSR activities - benefits

Actions taken as part of CSR are actually only benefits. Among them, there are:

  • attracting investors,
  • building loyalty,
  • raising the level of the company's organizational culture,
  • increased interest of investors,
  • creating positive relations with the community and local authorities,
  • increased trust among employees, as well as consumers and stakeholders,
  • improving the company's image,
  • strengthening the market position,
  • strengthening the company's reputation,
  • increased competitiveness and brand value,
  • increasing employee motivation,
  • increased interest among potential employees,
  • increasing market share.

CSR activities

Every entrepreneur should remember that CSR activities should be closely related to the beliefs and worldview of the brand. Unfortunately, it happens that companies decide to take one-off, often ill-considered activities in the field of corporate social responsibility. As a result, they are perceived as an ordinary brand promotion or the implementation of marketing assumptions, and this is not what CSR is. Therefore, all activities should be well thought out to bring the most benefits - both for the people they are targeted at and for the company. For this purpose, it is good to use consulting offer. Companies that deal with the creation of communication strategies in enterprises will help in planning effective CSR activities.

Examples of corporate social responsibility

CSR examples of companies operating on the Polish market are a rich treasury of knowledge. They run projects in different areas CSR areas. An example of activities related to the issue of human rights is the MAKRO Polska company and its project "Handel is a woman". The aim of the initiative is to promote enterprising women working in trade. Philip Morris Polska strives for women to constitute 40% of employed people in 2022. Therefore, it creates many initiatives, the effect of which is to be, among others: increasing the number of women in managerial positions.

Capgemini Polska has created the project "Mom, work in IT/finance", which addresses the problem of activating women who resume work after parental leave. The brand shows that it is possible to combine professional career and private life (especially parenthood). One of Orange Polska's initiatives is support for diversity (the "Razem.One" project). Polpharma, on the other hand, conducts extensive activities aimed at people with disabilities.

An example of undertakings in the field of employment practices is the program "Someone is waiting for you" by LOTTE Wedel. The initiative addressed to people using the business fleet is aimed at spreading awareness and knowledge about road safety. The Amica brand conducts an active dialogue with employees, organizing hourly, anonymous chats with the management board (once a quarter). Records of conversations are made available in internal communication channels and inform employees about the implementation of actions taken as a result of suggestions, questions, etc.

Since 2013, Provident Polska has been implementing the "We care not only about moms" program addressed to employees who recently became parents. The company gives new parents gifts containing practical accessories for a newborn. CSR activities in the field of employee practices are also carried out by T-Mobile Polska. One of her initiatives was to create a special family-friendly room (in the company's headquarters) where employees can fulfill their professional duties while caring for children.

CSR activities

Pro-environmental CSR activities include, for example, the "Eco from a child" project of the Kaufland Polska Markety chain. Its aim is to shape the environmental awareness of preschool children through the organization of interactive workshops, etc. Bank Pekao focuses, among others, on to help Polish bison. Since 2004, he has been taking care of the protection of these animals, e.g. by supporting relevant institutions and allocating funds to co-finance protection. Leroy Merlin's idea is to locate bee hives near shops, as well as fight against smog (inclusion in the #OddychajWarszawo campaign).

Other CSR activities carried out by companies operating on the Polish market include:

  • Agora Group and its program "Helios without barriers!" - screenings of Polish films with subtitles,
  • the "Polski MultiUczynek" Benefit Systems program - helping children and young people in a difficult life situation, seniors and people with disabilities,
  • the document "Chemical substances management policy" and the list of restricted substances introduced by the CCC,
  • Senior Forum organized by the Enea Group - talks about safety, new technologies, health with seniors.

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CSR areas – corporate responsibility in practice

A popular document regulating the guidelines of corporate social responsibility is the ISO 26000 standard. The document defines the areas of activity that should be taken into account when creating a CSR strategy. We include among them:

  • organizational order,
  • human rights,
  • work practices,
  • pro-ecological activities,
  • fair operating practices,
  • consumer issues,
  • activities for the benefit of the local community.

Organizational governance includes all codes, CSR strategies as well as mechanisms and policies that allow for efficient management of the entire process of corporate social responsibility. The scope of the organizational governance area also includes dialogue with groups on which a given company has influence.

The second area covers all issues relating to respect for human rights. This mainly applies to your own operations and employees. The scope of such CSR activities includes, among others combating broadly understood discrimination in the workplace (e.g. due to gender, age, sexual orientation or belief), preventing mobbing, supporting diversity in the workplace. Labor practices are about the welfare of employees. These are investments in their development, safe and comfortable working conditions, or the organization of additional training to raise qualifications.

Pro-ecological activities are aimed at environmental protection. They concern the use of all resources, emission of pollutants, waste generation, etc. An example of pro-ecological CSR activities may be the introduction of the Eco Office principles - replacing light bulbs with energy-saving ones, using recycled paper, providing employees with reusable bottles instead of plastic water.

Fair operating practices are activities related to ethical behavior in contacts with business partners, public administration and other entities. The aim is, inter alia, anti-corruption. This area of CSR also includes taking care of good relations with competitors, conducting the so-called fair competition, avoiding spreading black PR.

your company's CSR activities, corporate PR

Consumer issues are oriented towards the welfare of customers. Activities include honest marketing campaigns, honest consumer information, and promoting sustainable consumption.

Activities for the benefit of the local community are all undertakings related to the environment in which the enterprise operates. They may include cooperation with local organizations, supporting important initiatives, or creating educational projects for children and adolescents in the area. An example of activities for the benefit of the local community is a cake fair prepared by employees, the purpose of which is to raise money for a good cause (e.g. for an operation or for a local shelter).

How did the pandemic affect CSR activities?

The coronavirus pandemic has reinforced the trend of corporate social responsibility. Many companies became involved in the fight against the crisis by introducing appropriate actions to their CSR strategy.

CSR initiatives during the pandemic include:

  • helping the most needy (e.g. health care or seniors),
  • implementation of appropriate rules and procedures for accepting customers in order to minimize the risk of infection,
  • adjusting stores to the applicable sanitary and epidemiological requirements (guarantee of safe shopping) - availability of gloves and liquids for disinfection, disinfection of baskets, etc.,
  • fit employer branding activities to the situation - creating favorable working conditions in times of a pandemic, the ability to work from home, etc.

What actions have companies operating on the Polish market taken? Żabka donated PLN 4.5 million to the Ministry of Health, and also enabled users of the mobile application to donate Żapps (points for purchases) to support the health service (the company doubled the value of points). Companies such as Maczfit, Red Bull, IKEA, Winiary, Costa Coffee, Pizza Hut, KFC, McDonald's and many others have become involved in the nationwide initiative #Wzywamy Posiłki.

The aim of the action was to support medical staff during the fight against the pandemic. Two months ago (from March to May 2020), the companies delivered over 220,000 meals to hospitals across Poland. The 4F brand organized the "Sport is Health" campaign, which promoted an active lifestyle during the quarantine. In addition, it started producing aprons and masks, and started selling t-shirts for donations, all proceeds of which were donated to Polish hospitals.


your company's CSR activities

Auchan Retail Polska also took care of the well-being of its customers and employees. The company launched a click & collect service, which increased the security of purchases - order online and pick up in the store. Orange Polska quickly responded to the increase in demand for Internet access caused by the lockdown. As part of the #jestemyzwami - customers campaign, the company offered a package of additional free gigabytes, promotional contract terms and the ability to handle many matters online. PKO Bank Polski created the Accelerating digitization project during the Covid-19 pandemic, the aim of which was to simplify the remote use of services and implement tools supporting remote work.

Corporate social responsibility standards

When it comes to CSR actions, examples of actions implemented by companies could be multiplied. Practicing corporate social responsibility is becoming more and more popular among enterprises. CSR standards and principles include a number of initiatives aimed at introducing socially responsible activities in everyday business activities.

Companies more and more often notice that business success goes hand in hand with care for social needs and protection of the natural environment. Implementation and compliance with CSR standards can contribute to both increasing profits and improving the company's image. Therefore, today, corporate social responsibility is an expression of the company's responsibility not only for the environment, but also for the recipients' perception of themselves. CSR activities support social interests while contributing to building a positive image of the company, which in turn is an additional incentive to promote corporate social responsibility. Being a socially responsible company means not only using the most popular CSR activities, but also undertaking activities aimed at achieving social goals.


Corporate Social Responsibility is becoming not only a fashionable slogan, but a key element of the strategies of companies striving for sustainable development. Examples of CSR are diverse and may include activities such as investing in local communities, reducing carbon footprints, recycling programs, support for non-profit organizations, and workplace diversity and inclusion initiatives.

These types of practices not only contribute to improving the company's image, but also build trust and loyalty of customers, employees and business partners. An investment in corporate social responsibility is therefore an investment in the long-term success and stability of the company on the market.

Worth knowing:

CSR activities what is it?

CSR is an acronym that stands for corporate social responsibility. It is an approach in which the company takes into account not only its profits, but also the impact of its activities on the environment and society. CSR activities concern not only social activities, but also environmental protection, appropriate employment policy and ethical aspects of doing business. Thanks to the CSR approach, companies show their readiness to actively engage in building a better world. Nowadays, such activities are more and more appreciated by customers who are more and more aware of the impact of business on the environment and the surrounding reality.

What are examples of CSR activities?

Nowadays, more and more companies are involved in CSR activities, i.e. corporate social responsibility. Examples of such activities include, for example, care for the natural environment by using energy-saving technologies, promoting equality and diversity in employment, as well as supporting local communities by investing in the development of education or culture. An important aspect of CSR is also care for the effects of business activity on the health and safety of employees and consumers. By implementing such activities, companies show that they are not indifferent to the needs of society and the environment in which they operate.

What are the CSR tools?

CSR tools are key elements of sustainable development strategies for companies and organizations. These are tools that allow you to assess and develop the impact of the activities of a given organization on the natural environment, society and economy. CSR tools include social audits, sustainable development reporting, business ethics, social engagement strategy and many others. Thanks to the use of these tools, companies and organizations can act in accordance with ethical principles, increase their social awareness and achieve business success, while contributing to the good of society and the natural environment.

What is the difference between responsible business and public relations?

Responsible business and public relations are concepts that are sometimes confused with each other. However, there is an important difference between them. Responsible business is a strategy in which the company emphasizes building a positive reputation through activities for social responsibility, sustainable development and ethical business practices. On the other hand, public relations is a tool used by enterprises to maintain and build relationships with various groups, including the media, customers, shareholders, as well as other companies. Although both approaches are interrelated and influence each other, responsible business focuses on social values and caring for the natural environment, while public relations is focused on external communication.

Does CSR apply only to large corporations?

CSR, or corporate social responsibility, does not only apply to large corporations. Every company, regardless of its size, has an impact on the surrounding community and environment. This is related to its daily activities, the way it manufactures products or manages human resources. That is why it is worth every company, regardless of size, to include CSR aspects in its business strategy. Acting in accordance with the principles of CSR means not only caring for the quality of manufactured products or services, but also contributing to the development of the local community, improving working conditions, and protecting the environment.

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