This week was the Unilever week as Toby Webb rightly predicted last week. Unilever needs to be congratulated on the very open and direct stakeholder engagement this week. I did not direcly participate due to other commitments but the overall feedback I have seen was very positive.
Stay sceptical on CSR / Sustainability stakeholder engagement
Despite all the these great efforts do I have a simple but in my view important message today: Always stay sceptical when you come across stakeholder engagement campaigns. Most of the campaigns have only two goals unfortunately, (1) to increase sales and (2) to enhance the reputation of this particular corporation or brand.
Local stakeholder engagement is true stakeholder engagement
Is all stakeholder engagement spin? The clear answer is NO. If you are interested in finding true stakeholder engagement examples then you need to have a closer look at the local stakeholder engagement activities of corporations in your community. Take the time to look through corporate websites of businesses in your community and identify the kind of engagement you find you can agree with. Successful stakeholder engagement is not meant to be a big splash with millions spent on it. Successful stakeholder engagement is meant to be resonating with you the individual stakeholder in your own context. I am sure you will find some great examples of stakeholder engagement resonating 100% with you and your community.
Stakeholder engagement best practice has two sides to it these days . 1) Global and 2) local stakeholder engagement. Unilever has shown us how to conduct useful global stakeholder engagement this week but let us not forget about the local community stakeholder engagement. For me local community stakeholder engagement is the true engagement and it always will.
Picture Credit: Ramon Azofra