The Role of Social Responsibility in Hotels
By Didi Lutz President, Didi Lutz PR | May 2010
Today, the term of social responsibility is well known as the obligation a business has towards society as whole; to voluntarily seek and pursue objectives that are ethical and respectable, and to responsibly act with concern for the surrounding community, and the world.
Nearly every corporation and large company has created a program reflecting social responsibility. Nowadays, the public expects these programs from large companies. But, all of us have to do our part. It doesn't matter if you manage a small boutique property, or a large hotel chain, social responsibility is about following principles and a code of ethics that impact the community, regardless of organizational size or profit margins.
Practicing social responsibility in your business can also help you from a public relations standpoint. Showing that you care is not complicated. Strategic social responsibility programs help shape your hotel's brand and creates a respectable identity. Depending on the programs you create, you can get you in the news faster and become a trendsetter. And before you realize it, you have set an precedent for other hotels to do something similar for their communities.
Social responsibility requires strong organizational skills and a dedicated team who will follow the principles in place, and lead by example. Here are some suggestions as to how to start becoming involved:
Focus on the areas you can help. Create an outline of existing community initiatives you can help fund or assist with. Do you prefer to partner with a national organization instead? Where will your efforts to help be better utilized?
Consider your own branding. It is essential that you know what you are associating your name with. Is it about going green? Is it funding education? Is it matching funds to provide vaccines to third world countries? Hosting blood drives? Take the time to discuss and decide what you want your hotel to be associated with. Remember once your name is connected to a specific initiative or project, guests will remember it as if it were a catchy slogan.