You cannot win the hearts of customers unless you have a heart yourself.

—Charlotte Beers, former advertising executive

I learned something significant about CSR and knowing your customers from the rapper Sean Combs (aka P. Diddy). I was invited to attend the Product Red launch at the Gap headquarters and was seated next to Bobby Shriver, who is Maria Shriver’s brother and the cofounder, with Bono, of Product Red. At the time, I was doing some research looking at the relationship between diversity and corporate responsibility. Bobby Shriver was describing the difficulties they were having in getting companies to sign on to Product Red, and he mentioned American Express U.S. Apparently American Express Europe had signed ...

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