CASE AGAINST SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

Opponents of social responsibility pure forward the following arguments against the assumption of social responsibilities by the businessmen:

(i)    Distracting attention from the main issues

The notion of social responsibility distracts the attention of the business from the main issues vital for running the organization, in a smooth and efficient manner. The result is that attention to social responsibility may lead to less efficient running of the organization; the ill-effects of which will ultimately fall upon the society, as a whole.

(ii) Burden on consumers

The notion of social responsibilities leads to an apprehension that the cost of performing social obligations may ultimately be transferred by the businessmen to consumers in the form of changing higher prices for their products I services from them. Better than, it would be not to impose social responsibilities on business; as consumers may have to bear the brunt of performance of social responsibilities.

(iii) Pre-existing obligation

Performance of social responsibilities is a per-existing obligation of the business community. It is not sufficient social responsibility that business are supplying goods and services to society for fulfillment of their needs; are paying taxes to the government and are creating employment opportunities in society? It would be illogical and unjust to burden them with further social responsibilities. 

(iv) Complicated decision-making

Involvement of social considerations in business decision-making will make business decision-making more complex, complicated and confused. Then, neither will the business be able to do justice to its own functioning nor do justice to society. Rational decision-making process will be unduly disturbed by the introduction of social aspects in the decision-making process.

(v) Moral commitment to owners

Business is morally committed to owners (who provide funds for its functioning) for earning good profits and paying them reasonable dividends – as a reward for risking their capital in the business. The notion of social responsibility, which implies satisfaction of the interest of various segments of society; comes in the way of this moral commitment of business to its owners.

 (vi) What the Government will do?

Performance of social responsibilities is the main responsibility of the State or government. If businesses are supposed to take care of social responsibilities; what the government will do, which gets ample revenues from the public by way of taxes etc for this purpose?

(vii) Loss of incentives?

Earning and maximizing profits is the main incentive of businessmen to put in their best efforts towards the most efficient functioning of the enterprise. The imposition of social responsibilities on businessmen kills this incentive.

(viii) Vague concept

Social responsibility is a vague concept; as to several people it means quite different things to be performed by the business class. Then, unless the until, the concept of social responsibility is standardized; performance of social obligations by the businessmen must not be expected, on a uniform basis. Further, social responsibilities must not be imposed on the businessmen in an arbitrary manner.