The objective of this assignment is to learn and practice applying a process for identifying, analyzing, and managing a corporation’s stakeholders. You will select one of the corporate social responsibility reports posted in Week 1 (i.e. Kellogg, Verizon, Dunkin Brands, or Key Corp.) and prepare a written stakeholder analysis using the Five Key Questions of Stakeholder Management listed in Figure 3-5, p. 75 of the text. Detailed explanation of each question is provided p. 73 to 83. (I’ve also provided some explanation of each question on the next page.) In your paper, do the following:
1. First identify all the stakeholders addressed by the company’s CSR report.
2. Next select one stakeholder group targeted in the report and determine how the company addressed the Five Key Questions of Stakeholder Management with regards to the selected stakeholder. When appropriate use evidence/specifics from the report to support your answer(s).
You will be typing your work in a word processing program and submitting this assignment via the Assignments Page on Bb. To submit:
1. Click on “Stakeholder Analysis” on the Assignments Page.
2. Under “Assignment Materials” and next to “Attach File” click “Browse Computer.” Locate the document on our computer and follow the prompts to upload your file to Bb.
3. Click “Submit.”
*Files must be either a .doc or a .txt format.
1. Write in complete sentence and paragraph format.
2. Work must be free from grammar and spelling errors.
3. Be clear and concise. Write as much as needed to effectively answer the questions.
4. Files must be either a .doc or a .txt format.
Understanding the Five Key Questions of Stakeholder Management
To reinforce understanding of the Five Key Questions of Stakeholder Management and the assignment let’s review each question using the Case: Wal-Mart the Main Street Merchant of Doom as an example.
Question 1: Who are the firm’s stakeholders? (Generic categories? Specific categories?) Again, to start your paper you will identify all the stakeholders addressed in the company’s CSR report. From that list you will select one stakeholder to complete the analysis. For example, there are many stakeholders in the Wal-Mart case (shareholders, employees, communities), but to complete the analysis I am going to select and focus on “small merchants” as a stakeholder.
Question 2: What are the stakeholders’ stakes? Legitimacy? Power? Urgency? For this question you will be identifying the “stakes” (a.k.a. “claims”) of the stakeholder you’ve selected for your analysis. The answer to this question must indicate the specific stakes as well as discuss the legitimacy, power, and urgency of the stakeholder group and its claim:
1. What are the stakeholders’ stakes? In the case of Wal-Mart and the small merchants, the small merchants’ stakes in Wal-Mart opening a store in their town would be their ability to compete and the survival of their own business.
2. Are the claims legitimate? Some of you may feel that yes this is a legitimate claim – some of you may disagree and say “no” this is not a legitimate claim.
3. What power does the stakeholder have? Again, using small merchants as an example, do small merchants have any power over Wal-Mart? Do they have any influence relative to Wal-Mart’s presence in their community? It depends, if there are enough small merchants in town and they are able to successfully rally the support of the community and local government, then perhaps they could bring about some action against Wal-Mart – either applying enough pressure and putting up enough road blocks to make investment in the community not worth Wal-Mart’s resources; or organizing boycotts of the Wal-Mart store. As we read in the case, in many instances the small merchant has no power relative to Wal-Mart and struggles to compete, and eventually closes its doors.
4. Is there any urgency regarding this stake? In other words does the stakeholder group and its claim need to be responded to immediately. Again it depends on the circumstances. For example, if the small merchants have organized a boycott outside Wal-Mart’s doors, the store is experiencing a dramatic loss in sales revenue, and national media is present covering the story, then yes, there is urgency – it is in Wal-Mart’s best interest to respond to the stakeholder and their claim. Another example in your book (p. 74) relates to McDonald’s practices and PETA’s stake to ensure the humane treatment of animals. As illustrated in the book, PETA had both power and urgency. Other clear-cut examples of urgency as it relates to stakeholder claims and the need for response include such accidents as the BP Gulf Spill, outbreaks of salmonella in the food supply, etc.
Question 3: What opportunities and challenges do our stakeholders present? Potential for cooperation? Potential for threat? For example, small merchants present some challenges or threats to Wal-Mart. Again, if the small merchants rally enough support from the community and local government, as we see in the case, they may be able to put up enough “road blocks” to prevent Wal-Mart from establishing a presence in the community or if a store is opened and operational they may be able to convince many customers not to shop at Wal-Mart. Alternatively, if small merchants’ products are too expensive, Wal-Mart has the opportunity to attract those small merchants’ customers who are looking for the same goods at lower prices.
Question 4: What responsibilities does the firm have towards its stakeholders? Identify in your analysis what if any economic, legal, ethical and philanthropic responsibilities the company has to the stakeholder group you selected. Staying with small merchants as an example, what economic, legal, ethical and philanthropic responsibilities does Wal-Mart have to small merchants?
Question 5: What strategies or actions should the firm take to best address stakeholders? Talk about how the company you selected is addressing its stakeholders. Using the terminology at the bottom of Figure 3-5 on p. 75, is the company dealing directly or indirectly; offensively or defensively; etc. with the stakeholder? Use specific examples from the CSR report to support your assessment.
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