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    Stakeholder Discussions

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    Respond to following statements:
    1. To me, the definition of stakeholders has not changed, rather the roles of stakeholders have changed. For instance, as Kotter's article points out, the successful organization of the future will have two organizational structures: a Hierarchy, and a more teaming, egalitarian, and adaptive Network (2011). I suspect this was very uncommon fifty years ago when employees were expected to simply follow the direction of their supervisor and offer little to no input. Moreover, it was probably uncommon for the CEO of one of the most lucrative companies on earth to have an open door policy with his/her employees, the way Keating's article described Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook.

    With respect to external stakeholders, these roles have changed significantly too. The internet has given customers tremendous leverage by allowing them to post company reviews and also to start movements against firms using social media sites. As recent CNBC article describes that many companies now have dedicated employees who do nothing but troll the Internet for corporate references, monitor chat rooms and online forums where there could be a discussion of the brand (Landsman, 2013). Companies will even follow what's said on marketplaces like Amazon about their products This means firms have to take more seriously the types of complaints they are receiving and how they are handling them (Landsman, 2013). They must also be aware of each and every decision they make as nothing seems to be private anymore. As quickly as information spreads today, a poor decision by a firm can lead to millions of people knowing in minutes. This would definitely not be the case fifty years ago.
    2. When talking about the changes in stakeholders, the process of globalization comes to mind as a factor that has affected stakeholders over the last fifty years. Globalization also affects the social responsibility of a company. The corporate social responsibility agenda is a complex one, requiring co-operation among a wide variety of stakeholders to be addressed effectively. Improved dialogue between the private and non-governmental sectors is one positive pattern emerging from recent corporate social responsibility trends. While early relationships were often characterized by mistrust and misunderstandings that fed a cycle of opposing actions and reactions, today stakeholders are increasingly recognizing the value of multi sector dialogue or partnerships to achieve substantive, long-term reform. Such a dialogue can facilitate a better understanding of the expectations and concerns of key stakeholders, and it can also act as a forum where debates over differences are more about identifying mutually acceptable solutions and practical implementation steps than reiterating entrenched, non-retractable positions. Forward -looking companies and NGOs are working with their stakeholders and, in the process, are benefiting from the expertise of all involved. Responsible development brings major challenges, and no one stakeholder is capable of adequately responding to them alone (Kilgour, 2001).

    3. Most companies understand that there is a broader spectrum of internal and external stakeholders who have a direct impact on their core business. Those that have engendered deep levels of engagement are far more successful in shaping that impact to their advantage. Ultimately, a stakeholder is a person, group or organization that has interest or concern in an organization or business. Stakeholders can affect or be affected by the organization's actions, objectives and/or policies. Some examples of key stakeholders are owners (shareholders), managers and employees, government (and its agencies), suppliers or vendors, unions, and the community from which the business draws its resources. The biggest difference in the definition of stakeholders that I have noticed over time is that community citizenship and corporate social responsibility have been integrated into the standards of stakeholders. There is now some of the mind set of, "can you do well while you're doing well?" from stakeholders. The standards of corporate social responsibility are at a new high and because Stakeholders value this, the company in turn needs to value this. Customers, employees, communities and business partners are among the key stakeholder groups that carry weight in company decisions and understanding the impact of these stakeholders on business is especially important for small businesses (Kokemuller, nd).

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    Solution Preview

    Thoughts regarding your statements:

    1. The points regarding social media are true, and companies have to expend very large amounts of money and a great portion of their budget, particularly for larger companies, to ensure that they are not getting any negative attention or negative publicity on social media. Regardless of social media, though, we are going to see immense changes taking place over any fifty year period, as the time frame that was mentioned in the statement. Businesses grow, the needs of people change (employees and other stakeholders), and we will see that filter down through employers, both large and small. ...

    Solution Summary

    This solution briefly discusses each of the stakeholder topics presented.