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美国作业代写:The public image of the company

2017-06-09 来源: 51due教员组 类别: Paper范文

下面为大家整理一篇优秀的paper代写范文- The public image of the company,供大家参考学习,这篇论文讨论了公司的公众形象问题。公众形象是小公司和大型企业的一切。由于丑闻和负面新闻的影响,公众对可能会对公司不信任,以及让消费者购买这些公司产品的欲望降低。一旦公司的公众形象没了,想要恢复是非常难的,因为它涉及到改变数百万人的心理感觉。公众的信任也是业务增长和可持续发展的关键。

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Chapter 1 – Introduction 

Public image is everything for both small and large corporations. There has been an increase in public distrust towards corporations as a result of increased scandals and negative outcomes. The negative events have resulted in reduced public trust towards these companies, as well as lower desire for consumers to purchase products from these companies. The manner in which the public perceives an individual organization has the potential to build it or break it. Regaining public trust is significantly complex as it involves altering the psychological perception of millions of people who view such companies and corporations negatively (McNabb, King, & Pētersons, 2010). This is especially difficult when the negative impact had a direct impact on specific individuals. In this regard, public trust is one-asset hat companies should always seek to protect towards keeping a clean reputation, which is essential for business growth and sustainability.

Chapter 2 - Literature Review

Studies have shown that CSR is quite useful for the benefit of a corporation. It can build positive images for corporations and therefore initiate the process of rebuilding trust after crisis happen.

Corporations should behave in socially responsible ways because it significantly affects their financial performance and social image. Although corporations have the goal to maximize profit and shareholder value with all their efforts, and behaving socially responsible seems to be contradicting to this purpose, studies have shown that CSR can actually bring more benefits than costs under certain circumstances (Campbell, 2007). What should be bear in mind for a public corporation is that its shareholders are also part of their important audience, and they would like companies to increase CSR initiatives (Iacono, 2009). Campbell (2007) specifically argued that economic conditions are the key component in influencing a corporation to act in socially responsible ways. Therefore, the transnational corporations with positive financial performance would have a larger probability to behave more social responsibly as it lies within their line of self-interest. CSR also serves as a moral boost for corporates’ internal employees and staffs as it encourages them to work in an environment that gives back to the society, not to mention the fact that employees participate actively even during the difficult times in economy (Iacono, 2009).

Corporate Social Responsibility has a positive impact on crisis communication and rebuilding trust. Brown & Dacin (1997) found that CSR positively influences the company and its products when it comes to consumer evaluations. Also, CSR would reduce the risk of brand damage, as consumers might expect fewer responsibilities from a company with strong CSR during such crisis (Klein & Dawar, 2004). Vanhamme & Grobben (2009) suggested that CSR encourages corporate communication about social efforts, which enables a company to rebuild its reputation and protect its image. For example, companies would use cause-related marketing to realize their objectives in reducing negative effects and crisis communication (Vanhamme & Grobben, 2009). As it comes to company performance, CSR can have a halo effect be projecting such positive company image and ‘creating credibility and trustworthiness among the general public’ (Vanhamme & Grobben, 2009, 275). This means that the longer a company initiate CSR programs and gain trust form the public, the better it can be protected from negative events like a crisis or an emergency. Therefore, the overall effectiveness of defending company image would depend on the company’s history of implementing Corporate Social Responsibility (Vanhamme & Grobben, 2009).

Scholars have also found that CSR can be carried out in the sense of social initiatives, and those who failed to do so might suffer from severe payments. Becker-Olsen et al. (2006) conducted studies and found that they generally present consistent results on the relations between social initiatives and the benefits of firms. The right CSR strategies that fit the firm will make consumers improve their perceptions and motivate them to reward with purchasing behaviour. In the interviews, most respondents believed that firms that were irresponsible should be boycotted, which obviously would harm the profit and development of these firms. What is more, Levy (1999) expressed that corporate responsibility and social initiatives are the core of business and should be consistent with the firm’s objectives both in short and long term.

Coombs (2014) stated that proper insights into crisis communication can be applied to improve the process, and that CSR is part of the effective applied communication. However, there are some concerning statements when it comes to whether companies should actively show CSR actions during a crisis. According to Vanhamme & Grobben (2009), it is recommended that companies should better not mention obvious CSR actions during crisis communication as strategy because consumers would generate levels of disbelief, especially when the company has only invested in CSR for a short period of time. This is because the possession of clear interest and the lack of solid reputation ‘are known to undermine the credibility of legitimating attempts’ (McGuire, 1985).

Similarly, Catchpole (2009) concluded that it is now quite common that a company has done numerous CSR activities of which it is proud of, and the company would like to share such lessons with its peers and shareholders to make the business world better. But when it comes to practice, the company does not prefer looking like all its CSR efforts are done for the primary reason of publicity. Catchpole (2009) pointed out that to avoid this loophole, a company should deeply internalize its CSR efforts together with its corrective actions that required during its public service and product development.

Chapter 3 – Problem Definition

Rebuilding trust between customers and the corporation is the No.1 priority for any companies after a major crisis. As part of the crisis communication strategy, CSR is considered to be one of the effective methods. However, the level of success rate varies for different companies under different scenarios, not to mention the concern that some companies tend to lose support when they intentionally show off CSR initiatives at the time of the crisis. Therefore, this article aims to address the use of CSR before and after a major crisis in corporations that help them rebuild trust between themselves and customers.

The research questions are listed as below:

Does the implementation of CSR have a direct and positive influence on rebuilding trust of customers?

In what way of CSR does the company recover from negative publicity? What are the factors that cause the success rate of CSR initiatives affecting company images after the crisis?

Should companies should actively show and publicize CSR actions during the time of a crisis? If not, what could be a good timing?

Chapter 4 – Research Design and Methodology

Hypothesis:

Stakeholder perceptions of corporate social responsibility (CSR) have a direct effect on the success of corporations seeking to rebuild trust before and after negative publicity. The hypothesis below is listed for case 1, 2, and 3 respectively.

Case 1: Nongfu Water

H1: Prior implementation of corporate social responsibility (CSR) has a positive influence on consumer trust and attitude towards an organization during a crisis.

Case 2: Fiji Water

H2: Perceived corporate social responsibility (CSR) can moderate and restore customer trust and their attitude towards an organization after negative publicity.

Case 3: Volkswagen

H3: Although CSR has positive influence on rebuilding trust, actively implementing CSR initiatives during the happening of a crisis would only enhance the negative publicity.

Methods

This study will use three cases of FIJI Water, Nongfu, and Volkswagen to evaluate the effect of perceived corporate social responsibility (CSR) on rebuilding public trust after their respective scandals that dented public images and trust. The research methods would be individual case studies which include focus groups, content analysis, text analysis, and secondary research.

Data Collection 

Each case would contain a set of focus groups study that uses experimental ways to study the attitudes of customers in the given environments during and after a crisis of the specific corporation. In the focus group, two groups of mixed male and female would be given stimulus materials with crisis simulation and CSR simulation. The crisis simulation would contain media coverage on the company background and breaking crisis together with the official statement from the company. The CSR simulation would outline a set of CSR initiatives during the crisis and two months after the crisis. Participant’s attitudes and perceptions towards the company at and after the crisis would be recorded and to evaluate the company’s public image. The results would then be analyzed for challenges, opportunities and implications responding to each sub-hypothesis.

Each case would also contain content and text analysis with sources from company statement at and after the crisis, company reports of CSR initiatives, and real-time comments from social media platforms by the public. Meanwhile, secondary research has channels including company websites, news coverage on newspapers and the internet, social media accounts, industry reports mentioning the crisis, and keyword search results. These firsthand and secondary research methods would allow this article to fully analyze the public reactions to the crisis and the companies’ CSR initiatives in reality and find out if they are really positively correlated.

Data Analysis

The research analysis would be done based on the research results of each case.

For case 1: Nongfu Water, the two focus groups would have two different manipulations respectively of a poor CSR reputation before the crisis and a good CSR reputation before the crisis. Combining the outcome with content and text analysis of the actual event, hypothesis 1 would be proven if the focus group with manipulation of good CSR prior to the crisis turns out to have better attitudes of the participants.

For case 2: Fiji Water, the two focus groups would have two different manipulations respectively of no CSR initiative and a positive CSR initiative two months after the crisis. Combining the outcome with content and text analysis of the actual event, hypothesis 2 would be proven if the focus group with manipulation of good CSR initiative after the crisis turns out to have better attitudes of the participants.

For case 3: Volkswagen, the two focus groups would have two different manipulations respectively of an immediate CSR initiative and no CSR initiative at the time during the crisis. Combining the outcome with content and text analysis of the actual event, hypothesis 3 would be proven if the focus group with immediate CSR initiative during the crisis turns out to have worse attitudes of the participants.

Anticipated Findings

The anticipated findings of the article are that perceived corporate social responsibility (CSR) is expected to positively influence the perception of consumers on corporations seeking to rebuild before after negative publicity.

First, prior implementation of corporate social responsibility (CSR) has a positive influence on consumer trust and attitude towards an organization during a crisis. Compared to those without long-term preparation and on-going efforts of CSR, corporate who has build up a good reputation of CSR tend to respond better when crisis happen, and they tend to suffer less from negative publicity at the crisis.

Second, perceived corporate social responsibility (CSR) can moderate and restore customer trust and their attitude towards an organization after negative publicity. Implementing CSR initiatives after the crisis is a helpful way to respond to the negative publicity which will gain the company positive reputation and improved customer relations. If the company does not implement effective CSR initiatives after the crisis happen, the negative publicity caused by the crisis tends to continuously affect the company image, resulting in worsen customer perception.

Finally, the timing of CSR initiatives is crucial for crisis communication. Although CSR has positive influence on rebuilding trust, actively implementing CSR initiatives during the time of a crisis would only enhance the negative publicity. The public tends to think of the appearance of obvious CSR efforts during the crisis as a clear interest of company image repair and it might therefore undermine the credibility of such attempts.

Although this study will provide significant insight into CSR and crisis communication, there are limitations.  First, the focus groups are using stimulations based on real events, and such stimulations are deployed in an artificial setting which tends to ignore the possibilities from the real world. What is more, the participants in the focus groups lack varieties of background and it might affect their response to the stimulation.

Overall, the above findings will be helpful for corporate seeking to avoid negative publicity from major crisis and repair their image for short and long term after the crisis. To fully utilize the positive effects of CSR, a company should deeply internalize its CSR efforts together with its corrective actions that required during its public service and product development instead of doing it only at time of the crisis.

Summary of Proposal 

The public expect companies to perform well and give back to the society, and they are likely to support companies that do so (Iacono, 2009). It takes a lot for a company to build up its image, but destroying such public image might only take some misbehavior or scandals. The damaged reputation can impact on its sales and profits, especially when it cannot cope with the crisis (Vanhamme & Grobben, 2009). Therefore, the proposal conducted research into the use of CSR before and after a major crisis in corporations to see if that it can help companies rebuild trust between themselves and customers.

According to the findings, three hypotheses have been tested to be true based on three different real life cases. Prior implementation of CSR has a positive influence on consumer trust and attitude towards an organization during a crisis. Perceived corporate social responsibility (CSR) can moderate and restore customer trust and their attitude towards an organization after negative publicity. Despite the help it may give, actively implementing CSR initiatives during the time of a crisis would only enhance the negative publicity.

Therefore, companies should actively participate in CSR movements by embracing such initiatives and acquire the opportunity to learn about the business environment apart from monitoring social media and reading relevant literatures (Catchpole, 2009). Instead of rushing off to implement CSR when crisis has already occurred, companies should instead conduct CSR movements that are constant and regular before anything happens. In this way they can build up their reputation of caring, responsible enterprises. Companies should also bear in mind to lay low during the crisis because drawing the public attention on CSR initiatives would look like these activities are intentionally prepared to cope with the crisis and the consumers won’t like it.

References

Becker-Olsen, K.L.,  Cudmore, B.A.,  Hill, R.P. (2006). The impact of perceived corporate social responsibility on consumer behavior.  Journal of Business Research, Vol 59, pp 46– 53.

Campbell, J. L. (2007). Why Would Corporations Behave in Socially Responsible Ways? An Institutional Theory of Corporate Social Responsibility. Academy of Management Review, Vol 32, No. 3, pp 946-967.

Catchpole, T. (2009). CSR graduates to 'must-have' status. PR Week. Retrieved from: http://www.prweek.com/article/1272333/csr-graduates-must-have-status

Coombs, W. T. (2014). State of Crisis Communication: Evidence and the Bleeding Edge. Nicholson School of Communication, University of Central Florida.

Iacono, E. (2009). CSR programs in good, bad times reap companies long-term benefits. PR Week. Retrieved from: http://www.prweek.com/article/1272222/csr-programs-good-bad-times-reap-companies-long-term-benefits

Klein, J.  &  Dawar, N. (2004). Corporate Social Responsibility and Consumers' Attributions and Brand Evaluations in a Product-Harm Crisis. International Journal of Research in Marketing 21, 203-217.

McGuire, W. J. (1985). Attitudes and Attitude Change, in G. Lindsey and E. Aronson (eds.), Handbook of Social Psychology, 3rd Edition, Vol. 2 (Random House, New York). DD. 233-246.

McNabb, D. E., King, G. J., & Pētersons, A. (2010). The Evolution of Public Trust and Social Responsibility in the Baltics. EBS Review, (27).

Reynold, L.  (1999). Give and take. Harvard Business School Press. Cambridge (MA) 7 .

Vanhamme, J., & Grobben B. (2009). Too Good to be True! The Effectiveness of CSR History in Countering Negative Publicity. Journal of Business Ethics, Vol 85, pp 273-283.

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