Internal marketing for engaging employees on the corporate responsibility journey
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Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to explore whether internal marketing could be a powerful tool for engaging employees on the corporate responsibility journey. Design/methodology/approach: In the absence of empirical work linking internal marketing efforts in organizations and employee engagement in corporate responsibility issues, a conceptual approach based on literature review is carried out to determine the existing possibilities provided by internal marketing to enhance corporate responsibility. Findings: Reflexion from the extant literature indicates that, because employee engagement matters, internal responsibility should be put first. The internal marketing umbrella, including ‘selling internally’ the idea of responsibility, facilitating internal communication, enhancing corporate volunteering or the possibility to become a social intrapreneur, could help to align employees´ needs with corporate responsibility goals. Practical implications: The results suggest that managers must ensure that internal aspects of management, such as internal communication and employee commitment are taken into account in order to get success in corporate responsibility issues. Managers need to be more proactive trying to introduce the marketing function in human capital issues. Understanding employees´ wants and needs and selling internally responsibility goals would make external efforts in developing a responsible strategy much more likely to succeed. Originality/value: Reflecting the literature which highlights the importance of internal marketing, we pay particular attention to their role on promoting corporate responsibility internally. The results indicate that while organizations strive to achieve corporate responsibility goals, it is expected that effectiveness will be greater among organizations using internal marketing tools for this purpose. To the best of our knowledge is the first time this relationship has been academically discussed offering recommendations for practitioners.
CitationSanchez-Hernandez, Isabel; Grayson, David. Internal marketing for engaging employees on the corporate responsibility journey. "Intangible capital", Octubre 2012, vol. 8, núm. 2, p. 275-307.