Together with a couple of others, I have recently launched a campaign called Apology Clause, which we have conceived, created and will run on a pro bono basis.
The campaign aims to make it easier for businesses to behave with compassion when things go wrong, and thus for victims to have better recoveries.
Research from Ipsos Mori, the market research company, indicates many in politics and the media believe that businesses have a licence, or even an obligation, to speak out on important, and perhaps controversial, socio-political issues.
But if companies are considering taking a stand on a big social or political issue, what do they need to consider to get it right?
Capitalism is under threat and companies now face a more hostile environment in which to do business than at any time in the last 40 years.
A study by the Legatum Institute, a think tank, and Populus, the market research company, found that there is widespread support for Labour’s nationalisation agenda and much less support for free enterprise. For advocates of free enterprise, anyone who runs a business, and, as should be the case, is merely employed by private enterprise, the report makes sober reading.
The big bad wolf is the archetypal menacing predator. Preying on the weak and vulnerable, he has few, if any, redeeming features. For many, this is how they see big business. Recent research by the Legatum Institute showed that the British public holds an unfavourable view of ‘capitalism’ as a concept, viewing it as ‘greedy’, ‘selfish’ and ‘corrupt’. A vast majority, according to the research, would like to see many industries, and the big businesses within them, nationalised.