Small Businesses Also Have A Corporate Responsibility
"As immediate members of communities, we work face to face with the people that make up our community."
Cristina Timotei, Marketing Director
In today’s competitive market, the priority of any business is to make a profit. However, here at InBite, we would argue that corporate responsibility is an integral part of creating value for a company. InBite is a small gluten-free and vegan manufacturing company in South Florida. Along with making our products, we are also a private label for other health-conscious bakery companies. Corporate responsibility is the practice of staying competitive in the market while holding social accountability towards the people that compromise the company and the general public.
We have noticed that some large companies, while having a tremendous amount of profit, usually lack a sense of responsibility toward their community. Naturally, there are exceptions like Patagonia, Cotopaxi, Kind, Chobani, and other large companies that have made it their mission to help and fight for a cause. However, even so with so many large corporations that only work towards their financial statements, why should the little guys hold themselves to a higher standard when it seems like we can’t afford to do so?
Small Business’s Moral Obligation
First, corporate responsibility can be beneficial for a small business. As immediate members of communities, we work face to face with the people that make up our community. Small businesses need to keep this fact in mind, as building a strong rapport within your community is the first step to growth.
Even so, corporate responsibility is not as costly as it seems. Sustainability efforts can be small, helping the community doesn’t have to be time-consuming, and paying workers a livable wage is not going to ruin your company’s finances.
Helping the Environment
At InBite sustainability incentives currently consist of an internal recycling program where all our trash is divided into plastic, paper, and compostable waste. As buyers of Kimberley Clark’s plastic products, we are currently part of their RightCycle program, where all nitrile gloves waste goes back to the Kimberley Clark facility and is turned into new consumer goods. Another plastic waste is reused with InBite for trash, and thus we have eliminated our need to buy trash bags. Lastly, organic waste is put back into the environment and added to soil to help plants grow.
This is at a minimal cost to the company. It is just about being mindful and staying consistent with our values.
Serving the Community
A small business needs to give back to the community. This could involve giving a percentage of your profits back to the community. While this is at your expense, it shows character to the consumer. The consumer does care about corporate responsibility. Additionally, if you can’t afford to give up some of your profit, we also encourage donating your products. InBite tends to donate bakery goods to people in need, like our high-protein cookies, nutritious granola, and other products.
Responsibility Towards Employees
At InBite, we start all our employees with a minimum of $15 an hour wage. We strongly believe this is worth it as paying employees more incentives to not overwork themselves and thus be more productive. We have noticed that when our employees are happy, our company tends to be more productive. We highly encourage our companies to adopt this practice as it builds a better relationship between employer and employee.
Overall, even as a small business, we feel that we have a responsibility towards the community, our workers, the environment, and our clients. For more information about our company feel free to visit our website.