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Companies and their CEOs are encountering job seekers who are looking for best corporate citizenship. A blog by Bob Langert, vice president for CSR at McDonald’s tracks the trend  

General Electric Chairman and CEO Jeff Immelt, last week, accepted the Award for Corporate Excellence (ACE) on behalf of the company from U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice at a ceremony in Washington, DC. 

GE received the award in recognition for its corporate social responsibility efforts, specially its active involvement in Tsunami relief efforts and for employee volunteerism and educational programs. 

It is this role of corporate citizenship that seniors among the Gen Y (1978 to 1989), set to enter the workforce in Corporate America are looking for in a potential employer, more than the size and the position of the company. More company CEOs are realizing the importance of “green recruiting” as they ask their company recruiters to explain the company’s commitment to the environment and the community to an increasing number of potential candidates seeking socially responsible employment.  

McDonald’s Vice President for Corporate Social Responsibility Bob Langert has highlighted such an experience in his blog “Corporate Citizenship and The War For Talent” in McD’s CSR blog called “Open for Discussion”. 

He writes: “Everyone I know checks out the websites of companies they are interviewing with to see what they do for the environment. It is part of choosing a company.” 

Net Impact, an international not-for-profit organization based in San Francisco, California and network of more than 10,000 new leaders and MBA students committed to using the power of business to improve the world, recently organized a forum of such students and professionals along with the Vanderbilt Owen Graduate School of Management. Called “Building a Sustainable Future: What Will You Do Next?” the forum had speakers including Chad Holliday, Chairman and CEO of Dupont. 

Langert has also quoted an interesting essay by Bradely Googins, executive director for the Center for Corporate Citizenship in which Googins draws an analogy of today’s job seekers to that of free agents from major American sports, saying that today employers are “caught between two contradictory trends and values: Lifetime employment has been replaced by employees as free agents, and business success is tied even more to intense competition for building a strong human asset base – in other words, attracting and maintaining the best and the brightest.”.

Langert concludes his blog with what his own daughter feels about CSR and wants to do for a career. He writes: “She told me how she wanted to do something to make a difference in the world. She and her peers are our future. As with any “war”–in this case, a “war for talent” – there will be organizations that are winners and losers. But it is a war I can support full-heartedly.”

Bye, bye John Mackey blog? 

Whole Foods seem to have put a lid on blogging, including its CEO blog by John Mackey that almost brought trouble to the company. In an updated “Code of Business Conductreleased on November 2, the company has banned any posting on the part of any member of the Company Leadership, unless approved by the Nominating and Governance Committee, not surprisingly, signed with a message by Mackey himself.  

Under Online Forums, it says: “To avoid the actual and perceived improper use of Company information, and to avoid any impression that statements are being made on behalf of the Company, unless approved by the Nominating and Governance Committee, no member of Company Leadership (as defined below) may make any posting to any non-Company-sponsored internet chat room, message board, web log (blog), or similar forum, concerning any matter involving the Company, its competitors or vendors, either under their name, anonymously, under a screen name, or communicating through another person. Violation of this policy will be grounds for dismissal. For purposes of this paragraph, “Company Leadership” includes each Company director, Executive Team member, Global Vice President, Regional President and Regional Vice President. For other Team Members, other policies may apply and they should consult the GIG.” 

However, the company has not yet removed the introduction to Mackey’s blog on its web site which invites readers to “Check out our current blogs“. 


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