Toward a Communality with Employees: The Role of CSR Types and Internal Reputation

  • Yeunjae LeeEmail author
Original Article


The aim of this study is to examine the impacts of organizations’ corporate social responsibility (CSR) types from internal perspectives. By building linkages among CSR, organization–employee relationship, and internal reputation, the current study investigates how organizations’ CSR practices influence the communal relationship between an organization and employees as well as their perceived external prestige (PEP) of an organization. An online survey was conducted with 507 current full-time employees working in large-sized companies in the United States. Results show that four dimensions of CSR activities—discretionary, ethical, legal, and economic CSR—are significantly related to employees’ perceived external prestige. Furthermore, the study found that employees’ PEP is positively related to their perceptions of communal relationships, as well as their communal willingness to the companies. Different direct impacts of CSR activities on the communal relationship between an organization and its employees are also investigated. Theoretical and practical implications of this study are discussed.


CSR Internal reputation Communal relationship Employee relationship 



  1. Abdullah, M., and N. Rashid. 2012. The implementation of corporate social responsibility (CSR) programs and its impact on employee organizational citizenship behavior. International Journal of Business and Commerce 2 (1): 67–75.Google Scholar
  2. Ali, I., K.U. Rehman, S.I. Ali, J. Yousaf, and M. Zia. 2010. Corporate social responsibility influences, employee commitment and organizational performance. African Journal of Business Management 4 (12): 2796–2801.Google Scholar
  3. Bartels, J., A. Pruyn, M. de Jong, and I. Joustra. 2007. Multiple organizational identification levels and the impact of perceived external prestige and communication climate. Journal of Organizational Behavior 28 (2): 173–190.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bhattacharya, C.B., D. Korschun, and S. Sen. 2009. Strengthening stakeholder–company relationships through mutually beneficial corporate social responsibility initiatives. Journal of Business Ethics 85 (2): 257–272.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bolton, L.E., and A.S. Mattila. 2015. How does corporate social responsibility affect consumer response to service failure in buyer–seller relationships? Journal of Retailing 91 (1): 140–153.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Brammer, S., and S. Pavelin. 2004. Voluntary social disclosures by large UK companies. Business Ethics: A European Review 13 (2–3): 86–99.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Carmeli, A. 2005. Perceived external prestige, affective commitment, and citizenship behaviors. Organization Studies 26 (3): 443–464.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Carmeli, A., and A. Freund. 2009. Linking perceived external prestige and intentions to leave the organization: The mediating role of job satisfaction and affective commitment. Journal of Social Service Research 35 (3): 236–250.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Carmeli, A., G. Gilat, and J. Weisberg. 2006. Perceived external prestige, organizational identification and affective commitment: A stakeholder approach. Corporate Reputation Review 9 (2): 92–104.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Carmeli, A., and A. Tishler. 2004. The relationships between intangible organizational elements and organizational performance. Strategic Management Journal 25 (13): 1257–1278.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Carroll, A.B. 1991. The pyramid of corporate social responsibility: Toward the moral management of organizational stakeholders. Business Horizons 34 (4): 39–48.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Clark, M.S., and J. Mills. 1979. Interpersonal attraction in exchange and communal relationships. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 37 (1): 12–24.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Clark, M.S., and J. Mills. 2012. A theory of communal (and exchange) relationships. In Handbook of theories of social psychology, ed. E.T. Van Lange, P.A.M. Kruglanski, and A.W. Higgins, 232–250. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications Ltd.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Cochran, P.L. 2007. The evolution of corporate social responsibility. Business Horizons 50: 449–454.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Dhanesh, G. 2012. The view from within: internal publics and CSR. Journal of Communication Management 16 (1): 39–58.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Dhanesh, G. 2014. CSR as organization–employee relationship management strategy. Management Communication Quarterly 28 (1): 130–149.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Dutton, J.E., J.M. Dukerich, and C.V. Harquail. 1994. Organizational images and member identification. Administrative Science Quarterly 39 (2): 239.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Fombrun, C.J. 2005. A world of reputation research, analysis and thinking—Building corporate reputation through CSR initiatives: Evolving standards. Corporate Reputation Review 8 (1): 7–12.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Fuller, J.B., K. Hester, T. Barnett, L.F.C. Relyea, and C. Relyea. 2006. Perceived organizational support and perceived external prestige: Predicting organizational attachment for university faculty, staff, and administrators. The Journal of Social Psychology 146 (3): 327–347.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Glavas, A., and K. Kelley. 2014. The effects of perceived corporate social responsibility on employee attitudes. Business Ethics Quarterly 24 (2): 165–202.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Goodpaster, K.E. 1991. Business ethics and stakeholder analysis. Business Ethics Quarterly 1 (1): 53–72.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Greening, D.W., and D.B. Turban. 2000. Corporate social performance as a competitive advantage in attracting a quality workforce. Business & Society 39 (3): 254–280.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Grunig, J.E., and J.-N. Kim. 2011. Actions speak louder than words: How a strategic management approach to public relations can shape a company’s brand and reputation through relationships. Insight Train 1: 36–51.Google Scholar
  24. Hall, M. 2006. Corporate philanthropy and corporate community relations: Measuring relationship-building results. Journal of Public Relations Research 18 (1): 1–21.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Hameed, I., Z. Riaz, G.A. Arain, and O. Farooq. 2016. How do internal and external CSR affect employees’ organizational identification? A perspective from the group engagement model. Frontiers in Psychology 7: 788.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Hermann, S. 2008. Stakeholder based measuring and management of CSR and its impact on corporate reputation. In From customer retention to a holistic stakeholder management system, ed. M. Huber and S. O’Gorman, 51–61. Berlin: Springer.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Herrbach, O., K. Mignonac, and A.-L. Gatignon. 2004. Exploring the role of perceived external prestige in managers’ turnover intentions. The International Journal of Human Resource Management 15 (8): 1390–1407.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Hon, L.C., and J.E. Grunig. 1999. Guidelines for measuring relationships in public relations. Gainesville, FL: Institute for Public Relations, Commission on PR Measurement and Evaluation.Google Scholar
  29. Huang, Y.-H. 2001. Values of public relations: Effects on organization–public relationships mediating conflict resolution. Journal of Public Relations Research 13 (4): 265–301.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Hung, C.F. 2005. Exploring types of organization–public relationships and their implications for relationship management in public relations. Journal of Public Relations Research 17 (4): 393–426.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Jin, B., and S. Lee. 2013. Enhancing community capacity: Roles of perceived bonding and bridging social capital and public relations in community building. Public Relations Review 39 (4): 290–292.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Jones, K., and J.L. Bartlett. 2009. The strategic value of corporate social responsibility: A relationship management framework for public relations practice. PRism 6 (1): 1–16.Google Scholar
  33. Kang, D., J. Stewart, and H. Kim. 2011. The effects of perceived external prestige, ethical organizational climate, and leader-member exchange (LMX) quality on employees’ commitments and their subsequent attitudes. Personnel Review 40 (6): 761–784.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Kim, D., and M. Choi. 2013. A comparison of young publics’ evaluations of corporate social responsibility practices of multinational corporations in the United States and South Korea. Journal of Business Ethics 113 (1): 105–118.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Kim, H.S. 2007. A multilevel study of antecedents and a mediator of employee–organization relationships. Journal of Public Relations Research 19 (2): 167–197.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Kim, H.-R., M. Lee, H.-T. Lee, and N.-M. Kim. 2010. Corporate social responsibility and employee–company identification. Journal of Business Ethics 95 (4): 557–569.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Kim, J.-N. 2014. Understanding strategic value of good employee relationships and employee communicative actions: For better corporate branding and reputation management. Insight Train 1: 52–69.Google Scholar
  38. Kim, J., and M. Sung. 2016. The value of public relations: Different impacts of communal and exchange relationships on perceptions and communicative behavior. Journal of Public Relations Research 28 (2): 87–101.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Kim, S.-Y., and H. Park. 2011. Corporate social responsibility as an organizational attractiveness for prospective public relations practitioners. Journal of Business Ethics 103 (4): 639–653.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Korschun, D., C.B. Bhattacharya, and S.D. Swain. 2014. Corporate social responsibility, customer orientation, and the job performance of frontline employees. Journal of Marketing 78 (3): 20–37.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Lee, E.M., S.-Y. Park, and H.J. Lee. 2013. Employee perception of CSR activities: Its antecedents and consequences. Journal of Business Research 66: 1716–1724.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Lee, S., T.W. Lee, and C. Lum. 2008. The effects of employee services on organizational commitment and intentions to quit. Personnel Review 37 (2): 222–237.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Lee, Y. 2017. Exploring the impacts of relationship on employees’ communicative behaviors during issue periods based on employee position. Corporate Communications: An International Journal 22 (4): 542–555.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Lee, Y., and J.N. Kim. 2017. Authentic enterprise, organization–employee relationship, and employee-generated managerial assets. Journal of Communication Management 21 (3): 236–253.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Lewis, S. 2003. Reputation and corporate responsibility. Journal of Communication Management 7 (4): 356–366.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Lii, Y.-S., and M. Lee. 2012. Doing right leads to doing well: When the type of CSR and reputation interact to affect consumer evaluations of the firm. Journal of Business Ethics 105 (1): 69–81.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Lin, C.-P., Y.-H. Tsai, S.-W. Joe, and C.-K. Chiu. 2012. Modeling the relationship among perceived corporate citizenship, firms’ attractiveness, and career success expectation. Journal of Business Ethics 105 (1): 83–93.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. May, S. 2008. Reconsidering strategic corporate social responsibility: Public relations and ethical engagement of employees in a global economy. In Public relations research, ed. Z. Ansgar, B. van Ruler, and K. Sriramesh, 365–383. Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. McShane, L., and P. Cunningham. 2012. To thine own self be true? Employees’ judgments of the authenticity of Their organization’s corporate social responsibility program. Journal of Business Ethics 108 (1): 81–100.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Mignonac, K., O. Herrbach, and S. Guerrero. 2006. The interactive effects of perceived external prestige and need for organizational identification on turnover intentions. Journal of Vocational Behavior 69 (3): 477–493.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Mills, J., M.S. Clark, T.E. Ford, and M. Johnson. 2004. Measurement of communal strength. Personal Relationships 11: 213–230.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Mishra, S.K. 2013. Perceived external prestige and employee outcomes: Mediation effect of organizational identification. Corporate Reputation Review 16 (3): 220–233.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Mirvis, P.H. 2012. Employee engagement and corporate social responsibility (CSR). In The encyclopedia of human resource management (pp. 274–286). San Francisco, CA: Pfeiffer: A Wiley Imprint.Google Scholar
  54. Muthuri, J.N., D. Matten, and J. Moon. 2009. Employee volunteering and social capital: Contributions to corporate social responsibility. British Journal of Management 20 (1): 75–89.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. O’connor, A., E.A. Paskewitz, D.A. Jorgenson, and J.M. Rick. 2016. How changes in work structure influence employees’ perceptions of CSR: millionaire managers and locked-out laborers. How changes in work structure influence employees’ perceptions of CSR: Millionaire managers and locked-out laborers. Journal of Applied Communication Research 44 (1): 40–59.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Rego, A., S. Leal, M.P. Cunha, J. Faria, and C. Pinho. 2010. How the perceptions of five dimensions of corporate citizenship and their inter-inconsistencies predict affective commitment. Journal of Business Ethics 94 (1): 107–127.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Shen, J., and J. Benson. 2016. When CSR is a social norm: How socially responsible human resource management affects employee work behavior. Journal of Management 42 (6): 1723–1746.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Smidts, A., A.T.H. Pruyn, and C.B.M. Van Riel. 2001. The impact of employee communication and perceived external prestige on organizational identification. Academy of Management Journal 44 (5): 1051–1062.Google Scholar
  59. Stacks, D., and D. Michaelson. 2010. A practitioner’s guide to public relations research, measurement and evaluation. New York: Business Expert Press LLC.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Turker, D. 2009. Measuring corporate social responsibility: A scale development study. Journal of Business Ethics 85 (4): 411–427.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. Vlachos, P.A., N.G. Panagopoulos, and A.A. Rapp. 2013. Feeling good by doing good: Employee CSR-induced attributions, job satisfaction, and the role of charismatic leadership. Journal of Business Ethics 118 (3): 577–588.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  62. Waters, R.D. 2009. Measuring stewardship in public relations: A test exploring impact on the fundraising relationship. Public Relations Review 35: 113–119.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Reputation Institute and Springer Nature Limited 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Strategic Communication, School of CommunicationUniversity of MiamiCoral GablesUSA

Personalised recommendations