As the global economy moves towards a reputation-fuelled market place, valuations are increasingly driven by non-financial factors such as CSR. Many multinationals have already fostered comprehensive and broad CSR programs, as have smaller and mid-sized companies (SME’s), however, acting upon a solid and thought-through CSR strategy can have significant impact and generate business.
“Ethics is the new competitive environment” – Peter Robinson, former CEO of Mountain Equipment Co-op
A value-driven CSR policy, which, on the one hand seeks to demonstrate a corporation’s values, and on the other hand bolster finances, should be coherent, and differentiated enough as to yield concrete business results. According to a survey by the Reputation Institute polling 47,000 individuals, a clear majority of consumers tends to associate good CSR policy with areas such as innovation, workplace environment, corporate good governance (ethical behaviour and transparency), and corporate civic virtue.
CSR as risk management
Companies operating in Switzerland may be considered as a good example locally, but in a global world with intertwined supply chains, there is a need to address global issues and anticipate risks associated with doing business in highly diverse contexts. A properly integrated CSR policy framework is an essentially risk management tool in this complex setting.
Information spreads quickly
In today’s market, companies are in constant interaction with a wider community including business partners, shareholders, the media, investors or employees. In such an environment managing information flow is increasingly difficult. This is why a progressive CSR policy needs to be complemented with communication that is designed to be proactive and agile while satisfying stakeholder demands.
A proprietary methodology
The strategy of this program is to carefully assess existing CSR activities and extend these to a wider audience using effective, modern communications channels. Ultimately the goal is to help clients steer away from a “CSR-as-a-cost” mentality and attain superior business results while simultaneously strengthening the reputation of the firm.
Voxia and Conser have developed a proprietary methodology to assess companies through a dual diagnostics method (Double Diagnostic ®). First, we conduct a 360 degrees analysis of existing CSR activities and then assess the competitive framework with a positioning analysis and an evaluation of media impact. The Double Diagnostic is followed up with custom recommendations to improve strategy and tactics.
The implementation of this program is done together with Conser Invest, renowned specialists in responsible investment and CSR advice.
Evaluation, analysis and valuation program
Our proposal is divided into a number of modules. Clients can opt for a positioning analysis (dual CSR diagnostics – media visibility), a report detailing recommendations or project implementation based on previously performed work, and/or communication advice including media support.
Laurent Ashenden is the founder and Managing Director of Voxia Communication, the leading communications agency in the French-speaking region of Switzerland. Voxia Communication is the initiator and organizer of the leading event dedicated to sustainable finance in Switzerland: the Geneva Forum for Sustainable Investment and its alter-ego in Zurich, the Zurich Forum for Sustainable Investment. Laurent Ashenden is well-known an entrepreneur and has a solid track-record of having fostered a number of companies in the communication and financial services industries in Switzerland.
Alexis Delmege is Senior PR Consultant with Voxia and President of SRRP, the Public Relations Company of French-speaking Switzerland. He has been active in marketing consultancy and communications for over 15 years. His master’s thesis in sociology was on the status of sustainable development in Switzerland.
Jean Laville is in charge of risk management and ESG integration at Conser. Jean has 25 years’ experience in assets management, including 15 years in responsible investment. Before joining Conser, he served for 10 years as the Deputy Director of the Ethos Foundation, responsible for management and environmental research. John is also the author of various publications about social responsibility.
Marcus Stober is a Swedish national, and an expert in corporate communications and public affairs. His international career covers both working in-house and with agencies. He brings with him an extensive knowledge of CSR communication, acquired from having run a numbers of international CSR programs.