Let's look at Toms and Patagonia in the US – two brands that really walk the talk: their Corporate Social Responsibility efforts are brilliant and impactful. Their business is doing equally well.
While Toms is fighting gun violence, Patagonia supports environmental protection. What makes their efforts different is their authenticity and alignment.
In both cases, the impact is an authentic desire of the Founder or CEO of the company. They make it a priority to keep their standards high. They also make sure that their CSR is aligned with their business strategy. A crucial success factor.
Of course, they also don't mind fighting for their values:
under the leadership of CEO Rose Marcario, Patagonia even sued the Trump administration for its attack on Bears Ears National Monument.
“You can harness the energy of your customers who already support you because you stand for something,” Mycoskie, Founder of Toms, told MSNBC in November.
More and more companies are following their example, in Forbes we can read the following:
"Over 500 American companies, and 13,000 worldwide, have signed the UN Global Compact, which sets standards for members to align strategies and operations with universal principles on human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption, and take actions that advance societal goals.”
CSR pays off, too: a paper by the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS) found that companies choosing to engage in corporate social responsibility (CSR) have higher profit margins and valuation, but lower risk.