Children and business is a statement that rarely go together unless a very genius marketing manager is plying on the emotions of the young ones to make sales. Yet the reality is children have an impact on business and business have an impact on children.
Several studies show that child development has high impact on business in several ways such as. 1) How a child develops will impact greatly on the kind of an adult he/she will become, this includes the kind of employee the person will become, for example a child brought with high self esteem will be more willing to take risks in ensuring a business thrive. 2) People are more productive when they know their family is secure, for instant if a person has a child who is ill, they are less likely to concentrate at work. 3) Children influence the places and companies work and what services and goods they buy.
Business on the other hand can have a positive or negative impact on the child. The obvious one is child labor, there are still businesses that employ children below the age of 18 years. This denies children a right to childhood and education. The business environment also affects child development, businesses that insist on after hours working system deny children the right to parental care. The types of goods and services have an impact, for example advertising of tobacco and alcohol has shown has resulted to childhood drinking and smoking. In addition if a staff of businesses is accused of violence against children, it may reflect negatively on the business image and reputation.
On the positive side business can choose to be responsive to children by having cooperate social responsibility projects on children, starting a foundation for children, developing child protection policies, having a child/parent friendly working environment and having marketing strategies that are sensitive to children. Studies show that businesses that invest in child well being have higher returns and low staff turnover.
Thus what should businesses do to ensure that they are sensitive. United nations children fund in partnership with Save the children developed 10 principles that businesses that want to be child sensitive should adhere to.
1.Meet their responsibility to respect children’s rights and commit to supporting the human rights of children
2. Contribute to the elimination of child labour, including in all business activities and business relationships
3. Provide decent work for young workers, parents and caregivers
4. Ensure the protection and safety of children in all business activities and facilities
5. Ensure that products and services are safe, and seek to support children’s rights through them
6. Use marketing and advertising that respect and support children’s rights
7. Respect and support children’s rights in relation to the environment and to land acquisition and use
8. Respect and support children’s rights in security arrangements
9. Help protect children affected by emergencies
10. Reinforce community and government efforts to protect and fulfill children’s rights
In our effort to have children included in the business and cooperate world. Mtoto News will be highlighting business and children matters, what is the role of business in improving the welfare of children, trends in child sensitive business and we will show case best practices in business and children.
If you are a business and believe you are child sensitive, contact us so that we can tell your story. Also if you are a business and want to be child sensitive contact us and we will show you how
Mtoto News is an online platform of news. information and resources that aims at making significant change in the lives of children by making them visible. Read mtotonews.com or follow us on twitter and facebook @mtotonews
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More Resources on Children and Business