Will employees sacrifice pay to work for a more socially responsible organization?

Craig Smith, Douglas H. Frank

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


We study the question of whether social responsibility can help organizations to attract and retain talent by enhancing the employee value proposition. In two experiments- one in an MBA classroom, the other in an online labor market-that present competing job offers, we find that participants will sacrifice 12 to 18 percent of their wages to work for the organization whose mission they view as more socially beneficial. We argue that this “willingness to pay” for socially useful work represents a novel form of prosocial compensating wage differential. We also investigate recent claims that social responsibility attracts more desirable workers. The evidence is mixed and suggests that the type of worker attracted by a socially responsible mission may be more context-specific than heretofore recognized.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)868-873
Number of pages6
JournalAcademy of Management. Annual Meeting Proceedings
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2016


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