Society as a whole has become driven by social justice, environmental awareness, and human rights initiatives. So much so, they are often considered of greater importance than any other factor when it comes to decision-making. Organizations are no different, and the relationship some companies have with their customers go far past the products and services the organization offers; customers are choosing who to give their patronage to largely based on the philanthropic efforts of the company. Many companies are building culture, not only within their organizational walls but throughout their customer base. These organizational-driven cultures do not have customers simply looking for a deal on a product, but they are searching for organizations that act in accordance with the values they possess personally.
In the US, speech is a protected right that is often taken very seriously. With the rise in philanthropic initiatives springing up for organizations, it is imperative organizations not only engage in some beneficial activity for the society that surrounds them but provides guidance to the followers. Just as much as the employees are a part of the organizational, so are the loyal patrons of the organization. This will cause some organizations to feel responsible for providing guidance in times of challenge.
Since social media is so prevalent today and organizations are becoming savvier in their use of it, there is a way to get their message out to their loyal customers while also sending a message to their general public. From anyone outside the organizational culture, this may seem out of line, but just as leaders properly build a culture and give guidance to employees, the same is necessary for the loyal customers.
Schein, E. H. (2010). Organizational culture and leadership. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. Retrieved from http://www.books24x7.com/marc.asp?bookid=36500
Van Velsor, E., McCauley, C. D., Ruderman, M. N., & Center for Creative Leadership (Eds.). (2010). The Center for Creative Leadership handbook of leadership development (3rd ed). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.