It has throughout recent decades and especially recent years been claimed that companies need to be aware of their approach toward stakeholders. Additionally, recent studies have found that companies which pay extensive attention to their stakeholders outperform the companies which do not, at least based on the development of the companies’ market value. Obviously, this have attracted considerable attention to the subject. These aforementioned studies do however contradict previous perceptions of how companies are supposed to operate and act, namely the perception of Milton Friedman who believed that companies’ sole responsibility is to ensure the investors return, and that no such thing as social responsibility applied to companies. Besides Friedman, several other have offered their opinion on the matter and claimed the urgency of being legitimised if a business is to be successful. It was therefore established that there were rather different opinions on the degree of interaction needed towards a company’s stakeholders. Consequently, it was found interesting to examine if there was a financial effect of being appreciated by the stakeholders. This was done by studying three different orientations; the Stakeholder Oriented, Environment, Social & Governance Oriented, and Profit Oriented. Naturally, these three represents different approaches toward a company's stakeholders. In order to find which of the three orientations were superior in terms of financial performance, the study evaluated on different parameters of performance and the performance during both economic recession and expansion. Through a number of examinations, it was found that different performance parameters and economic fluctuations indeed has an effect on the orientations’ financial performance. Finally, it was found that the superior orientation in general was the Profit Oriented.
|Educations||MSc in Management of Innovation and Business Development, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis|
|Number of pages||102|