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Posted: September 6th, 2023

Write a business report on how should a firm take a stand on a

Write a business report on how should a firm take a stand on a

Until recently, large, public-facing corporations have been able to remain neutral on the political, social and cultural issues that divide Americans. Now, however, an increasing number of consumers expect these companies to take a stand on such issues as the #MeToo movement, immigration, LGBT rights, treatment of animals, gun control, fair trade, and professional athletes kneeling during the national anthem. Indeed, these politically-engaged consumers, who tend to have relatively large amounts disposable income, often buy a product or a service because they agree with the stand that a company has taken on one or more such issues. Conversely, these same consumers can decline to buy a product or service because they disagree with a company’s stand on one of them, or if a company hasn’t taken a stand at all.

In this scenario, you are a young marketing executive two or three years in to your career. You have been tasked with writing a business report for senior managers on the trend described (please pick only one specific issue), above, because these managers at your firm want to understand the cause or causes of this trend. They also want you to recommend an action (please provide your solution to “how to take a stand” on this specific issue) or actions that your firm should take to indicate its stance on a divisive issue of your choice.

Justification

This writing assignment gives us the chance to learn about a trend unlikely to weaken or disappear during your professional lifetimes. In fact, although this trend now affects consumer-facing companies, it is likely to spread to wholesalers such that businesses purchasing goods and services from them will do so – or not – on the same basis as some consumers do now.

Learning Objectives

To gain first or additional experience in:

o
audience analysis

o
writing explanation

o
writing argument

o
structuring the information in a report

o
formatting a report

o
composing an accompanying email

o
those sentence-level practices introduced so far

o
editing a first, ungraded draft such that the second, graded draft is virtually free of surface errors – that is, errors in grammar, spelling, and punctuation

Length and Format: 1000+ words net of the memo and bibliographic material; double-spaced, using Times Roman 12 pt. type.

Readings

Gelles, David, “The Moral Voice of Corporate America”

Gelles, David, and Claire Cain Miller, “Business Schools Now Teaching #MeToo, N.F.L. Protests and Trump”

https://tinyurl.com/yb8kpf6z

Mintz, Rich, “Companies: Don’t Be Afraid to Take a Stand: It Can Be Good for Your Brand”

https://tinyurl.com/ybwouczo

plainlanguage.gov, “Federal Plain Language Guidelines”

Rodríguez Vilá, Omar, and Sundar Bharadwaj, “Competing on Social Purpose”

______________________________
[Your Name]
[Your Position]
[Date]

Subject: Business Report on Taking a Stand on the Issue of LGBT Rights

Dear Senior Managers,

I am writing this business report to address the increasing trend of consumers expecting companies to take a stand on political, social, and cultural issues, focusing specifically on the issue of LGBT rights. This report aims to provide an understanding of the causes behind this trend and recommend actions that our firm can take to indicate its stance on this divisive issue.

Introduction
The modern business landscape has witnessed a significant shift in consumer expectations, with an increasing number of individuals seeking alignment with companies that share their values and support causes they care about. One such issue that has garnered significant attention and support is the fight for LGBT rights. Consumers now expect companies to take a clear stance on this matter, and failure to do so can result in a loss of customers and damaged brand reputation.

Causes of the Trend
Several factors have contributed to the emergence and persistence of this trend:

a) Evolving Societal Norms: In recent years, there has been a significant transformation in public opinion and acceptance of LGBT rights. With changing societal norms, consumers are more vocal about their desire for companies to actively support equal rights for the LGBT community.

b) Increased Consumer Activism: The rise of social media and the ease of information sharing have empowered consumers to voice their opinions and rally behind causes they believe in. As a result, they expect corporations to leverage their influence and resources to support these causes.

c) Generation Z Influence: The younger generation, particularly Gen Z, is characterized by a strong sense of social justice and inclusivity. This generation represents a significant consumer demographic and holds substantial purchasing power. Companies that align with their values and support LGBT rights stand to benefit from their loyalty.

The Importance of Taking a Stand
Failing to take a clear stance on LGBT rights can have negative repercussions for our firm. Here are some key reasons why it is essential to actively support this cause:
a) Attracting and Retaining Customers: Consumers who identify as allies of the LGBT community or belong to the community itself are actively seeking businesses that champion equality. Taking a stand on LGBT rights can help us attract and retain these customers, thereby driving growth and fostering brand loyalty.

b) Employee Engagement and Recruitment: Our employees, particularly the younger workforce, value diversity and inclusion. By demonstrating our commitment to LGBT rights, we can enhance employee satisfaction, attract top talent, and promote a positive work environment.

c) Mitigating Reputation Risks: In the era of social media and instant communication, any perceived indifference or insensitivity towards LGBT rights can quickly spread and damage our brand reputation. Taking a proactive stand helps mitigate these risks and showcases our dedication to equality.

Recommended Actions
To indicate our firm’s stance on LGBT rights and effectively engage with our target audience, I propose the following actions:
a) Internal Policy and Culture: Review and revise internal policies to ensure they promote inclusivity and provide equal opportunities for LGBT employees. Implement diversity and inclusion training programs to foster a supportive work environment.

b) External Communication: Craft a public statement expressing our support for LGBT rights and equality. Publish this statement on our website and social media platforms to demonstrate our commitment to the cause. Regularly engage with our audience on these platforms to maintain an open dialogue and address any concerns or questions.

c) Partner with LGBT Organizations: Establish partnerships with reputable LGBT rights organizations to demonstrate our active involvement in promoting equality. Collaborate on initiatives, sponsor events, or support fundraising campaigns to contribute to the cause and increase our visibility as an ally.

d) Marketing and Advertising: Incorporate LGBT-inclusive imagery, messaging, and diversity in our marketing campaigns. Ensure that our advertising materials reflect our support for equality and resonate with our target audience

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