As Brandeis put it, “sunshine is said to be the best of disinfectants.” And public companies are expected to be open and transparent, as per their very nature (public filings, earnings reports, etc).
The method used to determine the Black List is similar to the method used for its popular Best Citizens list. Data are collected in seven categories including Climate Change, Employee relations, Environment, Financial, Governance, Human rights and philanthropy. Employee relations, and the Environment are the two elements with the highest weighting (nearly 20% each). Governance was the lowest (7% weighting).
Given the vast amount of data that must be delved into, IW Financial (the company behind the list) shares the results with the companies before the data is published. This gives them the opportunity to point out mistakes, misunderstandings, etc.
This company, while not being a role model for Corporate Social Responsibility should not be on the Black List. It is true that Dreamworks doesn’t have a Corporate Social Annual Report and doesn’t disclose its efforts to reduce its environmental footprint (this author personally checked filings). Dreamworks doesn’t worry about Climate Change except on how it could negatively affect its costs of business and audience levels. They also disclose no opinions of efforts to make the world a better place. They are apolitical, though their animated movies are another story. Further, Dreamworks doesn’t disclose any large philanthropy or community programs.
However, the Black List is supposed to give a run-down on companies that disclose nothing. Dreamworks is far from that. In fact, its website does a good job in Corporate Governance (see below). The company, for example, has a contact link allowing anyone to contact the Board of Directors. It also distinguishes which board members are on the Audit, and Compensation committees.
|Source: Dreamworks Animation SKG|
A large part (about 20% of the score) of the Black List, consists of checking whether a company has good employee relations. IW Financial, which was responsible for the Black List research said that it checked several public sources (not just company websites, annual reports).
However, one need look far when checking Employee Relations as Dreamworks Animation has been on the Fortune 100 Best Companies to Work For link years, including its most recent survey. In fact, Dreamworks Animation was in the Top 10 two years in a row!
Fortune’s site not only gives a short description of why people like working there, but also stats on pay (which is high) health programs (they have a gym) work life balance, Diversity (nearly 1/3rd are women) and employee training.
|Fortune Magazine 2011|
|Source: CSR Hub: ratings|