Pay particular attention in this framework to key elements:

  • The five stages of CSR development are represented by the five stages in green.  Thus, the first spiral represents good governance and risk management with traditional philanthropy; the second spiral represents a move to strategic operational CSR; the third spiral represents movement into multi-stakeholder collaborative CSR where systems thinking and learning (ie. systems learning) co-exist.
  • A refreshing of vision, mission & values appears to be necessary in and around stage 3 in order to set in motion the leadership metronome (ie. the common tempo for CSR activities, thinking, framing, and delivery); this is all about executive efficacy.
  • Several authors agree that the hardest stage to develop is moving from stage 3 to stage 4.  Why?  I think this is because stage 3 is comfortable.  Though not perfect, and though it has some challenges from a talent development and CSR influence, it is comfortable and it does have evidence of some key success factors.  It requires a great deal of courage to face the vulnerabilities that are inherent in stage 3 and learn the necessary steps for stage 4 impact and movement into the collaborative learning loop and multi-stakeholder thinking.


"For what shall an organization profit if it should gain the world but lose its soul"
- paraphrase Matthew 16.26, Kim James vers. (Bolman & Deal, 2003, p. 394)

RELM©: Regenerative Engaged Learning Model

 Denise Berger,​ Ed.D.
 Leadership    Culture      Impact