MomentumCSR is wholly dedicated to the twin pursuit of Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainability as well as their iterations which are rendered as Shared Value, Corporate Social Impact, etc. What is important is that these terms all capture the effort of corporates and non-profits towards enhancing lives in their communities via a deployment of win-win strategies that may or may not necessarily redound to the bottom-line of their organisations.
There was Milton Friedman…
There was a time when this practice was not as emphasized as it is today, time when people like Milton Friedman held sway in corporate thinking. “The Friedman Doctrine” argued that the social responsibility of business was to maximize shareholder value and nothing else. Any pursuit of corporate social good should be an individual concern of shareholders as they get good returns from their investment. That, as you might say, was high mode capitalist thinking that left no room for any other pursuit aside profit.
And then Mr. Friedman lost ground…
But things have since changed. Arguments have been made by various scholars in favour of corporate social responsibility as a business imperative. And the overriding argument is that business owes a responsibility to all of its stakeholders, not just its shareholders. Those stakeholders would include the immediate and wider communities, its workforce, customers, suppliers, government, etc. Even as the stakeholders have a stake in how the business is run so also does the business have a stake in ensuring the welfare of the stakeholders so that there is repeat business, a wider customer base, harmonious operating environment, etc., etc.
MomentumCSR wants corporate organisations alive to their social responsibility
MomentumCSR is dedicated to ensuring that corporate organisations in Nigeria and Africa are alive to their social responsibility of ensuring a better environment for all their stakeholders. This is even more critical as African governments are not known to be alive to their own responsibility of helping raise the living standards of citizens in their various countries, reason why Africa has stayed glued at the bottom of all social and economic indexes forever.
And while corporates are at it, we expect that being the resourceful and nimble organisations that they are, they would find a way for win-win. They give, they get. It is not all charity in the traditional sense of the word, but rather charitable deeds that give value to both parties.
Momentum started out in 2006 as the first wholly dedicated CSR magazine in Nigeria. We ran until 2010 when the realities of the Nigerian business environment forced us to shutter the hard copy and relocate online. In between, we also ran for two years on BusinessDay newspaper as CSI (Corporate Social Impact).
While we have been online for a while, it was not with the exact vigour that such an endeavour required. Which is what we are now bringing to the site. This is a proper relaunch of the platform to give news about CSR and Sustainability happenings in Nigeria, Africa and worldwide. You will find a lot of foreign stories coming in from the West, and this is because we would like for our Nigerian and African companies to take their cues from what’s happening in the more developed economies and apply to their own businesses for their benefits and the benefit of their stakeholders.
It is our wholehearted belief that even more than the West, African companies need to make CSR/Sustainability a bedrock of their business practices.
And how about individual and celebrity responsibility?
Yes, that too is a big part of what we are about. It so happens that influential individuals in society generally tend to come from business, one way or another. However, whether they be businesspeople or not, we also point the lights at those who are making lives better via their individual contributions and sometimes this coming from their take as investors in business.
Additionally, the ordinary citizen who does anything worthy of applause will find him/herself spotlighted in MomentumCSR.
As well, we also take on celebrities as we today have that culture on a pervasive scale. Millions of folks follow on social media people whose values may be questionable but whose influence is unarguable. When they come up with ideas that benefit society or dole out largesse that benefit a deprived segment, we are happy to trumpet those, although we strive always to put things in context. That’s our own responsibility.