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- 03.13.2012 | Ready for this? Is it real — or is it P.R.?
- 03.01.2012 | What Do CEOs Admire? — Jeffrey Immelt, GE,
on CSR and Ecomagination
- 03.01.2012 | What Do CEOs Admire? — Ursula Burns, CEO, Xerox,
on being a good corporate citizen
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on sustainable performance and social accountabilty
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What Do CEOs Admire? Jeffrey Immelt, GE, on CSR and Ecomagination
March 1, 2012
In the March 1, 2012, online takeouts from Fortune magazine's annual "most admired" issue, here is Jeffrey Immelt, CEO of GE, on CSR and the company's Ecomagination program:
Q: In the wake of the Citizens United decision, with the Supreme Court suggesting that corporations are people, what kind of person do you want your company to be?
A: I think we've always been a good and generous company when it's come to corporate social responsibility around education and things like that. But personally, I think one of the things that this cycle is proving is that without competitiveness, nothing else really matters. I think in the end, GE is a competitive company, and in the end that might be the best source of CSR. It doesn't matter how much you're giving; if you're not able to create jobs, it's tough to be a good citizen today. And that's not a bad perspective to have.
Havas CEO David Jones, in his book, Who Cares Wins, credits GE's Ecomagination program as a beacon of good CSR...
You know, the essence of Ecomagination was that competitiveness and innovation are at the heart, and it's not really CSR-driven. It's more about innovation, and I think the more we can think about it that way, there are less trade-offs and more positive thinking.
So it sounds like Ecomagination's reputation as a responsible, admirable program is just a happy side effect.
That's exactly right.
For more of Immelt's views, including the companies and CEOs he admires, please click here.
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