What Matters Most is an optimistic but realistic, and most importantly, accessible read on CSR from its conception to potential future developments in the field. Helpfully split into a series of clear chapters – The Making of the Movement, The Value of Values, Risk and Reputation, Sustainability, Accountability, Transparency, Responsibility, Ownership and Social Responsibility – each section displays the depth and complexity of issues facing our era.
Using Seventh Generation, Hollender refers to his organisation throughout, ruminating on challenges and citing the solutions faced in his own journey towards CSR fulfilment. Fighting the case for CSR whilst simultaneously offering practical steps to reach the goal, the authors recognise business responsibility as the almost insurmountable, but necessary task ahead. Hollender shows doing the ‘right’ thing does indeed pay off, providing long term growth and trust for an organisation, naming some of the biggest players in modern life as success stories.
The following question is posed: ‘Will the critical and major players in forging the destiny of our civilisation wake up to the urgency of these problems soon enough to help lead us all away from the brink of disaster? Or will they only change reluctantly, kicking and screaming, as the earth dances with a destiny that none of us want to contemplate?’ With a head buzzing with statistics, the reader will be left feeling the need to start the book over, to fully absorb Hollender and Fenichell’s message.
Perhaps not for absolute beginners in CSR, but comprehensible for those familiar with the jargon, What Matters Most is a solid, all-encompassing study, showcasing a well-researched, varied use of examples and micro/macro scale examples of ‘good’ and ‘bad’ business practice. Hollender highlights the question ‘do we want this?’ as no longer relevant; now ‘what will happen if we don’t do this?’ is critical.
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