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Retracing the Three Years of POSCO Corporate Citizenship!


“POSCO Group aims to grow with the ‘Corporate Citizenship’, pursuing the value of coexistence and symbiosis while creating economical profits as one of the social members.”

It has been 3 years since POSCO made a public declaration about its management philosophy, ‘Corporate Citizenship’ with the wish of being a 100-year long company in July 2018. What will be talked about here is: POSCO’s intensive effort and remarkable achievement to follow the philosophy with the Special Symposium for a Path to the Future Management with 3 Years of POSCO Corporate Citizenship, which was held on July 21st.

l Setting Standards for Work-Life Integration with the Declaration of the ‘Corporate Citizenship’

POSCO desired to identify its new culture to make the growth of a 100-year long company earning respect from others while not only sticking to the philosophy ‘Contributing to the Nation with Steel Production’ with a 50-year history but also developing together with interested parties and contributing to the community.

This background drove the company’s proactive declaration of the management philosophy, ‘Corporate Citizenship: Building a Better Future Together’ in 2018. POSCO with its management philosophy, ‘Corporate Citizenship’ – pursuing ‘the value of coexistence’ while growing together across the industry and countries – has reached a stage in its evolution by contributing to the community.

After the declaration, POSCO keeps moving forward with three strategies:
△ Business With POSCO, to create value with customers, suppliers, and business partners
△ Society With POSCO, to shape a better society together,
△ People With POSCO, to nurture company culture of trust and creativity.
Employees engaging in innovation work with ‘the Three Principles’:
△ Pursue quality over formality
△ Pursue action than talk
△ Pursue practical interest rather than finding a cause

In July 2019 – 1 year later – ‘the Charter of Corporate Citizenship’ was declared as a business direction to move forward for the ‘Corporate Citizenship’.

▲ On July 25th 2019, the Charter of Corporate Citizenship was declared in the convention room of Pohang Head Office. The CEO of POSCO Group, Jeong-woo Choi, and the employee representatives are holding hands with each other after the declaration.

The charter concluded by the discussions with advice from internal or external panels and opinions from employees includes practical principles to achieve the POSCO’s Corporate Citizenship. In order to allow the principles to work in every business activity, it sets details for the principle:
△ to create a healthy industrial ecosystem with business partners,
△ to be a leader dealing with social problems and enhancing society,
△ to foster a company culture on trust and creativity to create a place ensuring employees feel valued and happy.

In July 2020, POSCO issued the Corporate Citizenship Management Standards (CCMS) to provide detailed guidelines to call for actions.

▲‘The Corporate Citizenship Management Standards (CCMS)’ were announced on July 28th 2020 as a keymap to keep being on track and reach the ‘Corporate Citizenship’

The Charter of Corporate Citizenship provides the concepts and direction of its management philosophy, ‘Corporate Citizenship’ that the employees should adopt while CCMS suggests a standard on actions and decision making, which helps employees practice and achieve practically for work and life.

l Establishing a new department for the Corporate Citizenship, holding meetings for advisory and strategies

POSCO’s new organization and conference groups established to implement its management philosophy, are leading POSCO in the right direction, playing their roles with responsibility.

In 2019, the internal governance set up a department for the Corporate Citizenship to control action and spread the philosophy more widely. In 2020, it also founded the Environment, Society, Governance Group (ESG) under the Corporate Citizenship department and established a firm foothold. In 2021, the ESG committee was established under the Board of Directors.

As an external advisory organization, the Corporate Citizenship Committee which directly advises the CEO began on March 15th 2019 welcoming its initial members: three external experts from the economic, management, humanities and social science, and law industry, and also seven other directors from inside and outside the company.

▲ The Corporate Citizenship Committee’s first meeting being held on April 8th 2019. Members shared opinions on revising ‘the Charter of Corporate Citizenship’ to inform employees about the importance of Corporate Citizenship to encourage their actions.

A Corporate Citizenship Committee’s meeting is held quarterly to discuss POSCO’s direction, management strategy advice, and suggestions especially regarding Environmental, Social, Governance (ESG) trend changes, and lastly, they review the results from achievement in social value following the plan.

The advisory organization, the Corporate Citizenship Advisory Conference, that began this year, gives direct advice to the CEO. It also consists of three additional experts in safety, environment, and organizational culture to provide more ESG related advice. The organization takes suggestions about industrial safety, health, and ESG business management strategies over its current assignment.

▲ The first half of the strategy meeting of the Corporate Citizenship held on April 16th, POSCO’s directors, the presidential boards, the heads of overseas corporations are attending online and in-person to talk about the company’s advancements, adaptation to social changes, and how to maintain competitiveness and continue to create a 100-year long legacy.

Moreover, POSCO analyzes its actions carried out by the philosophy for the entire groups, attending the Corporate Citizenship Strategy Meetings annually since July 2019 to share the best practices and reshape the strategy with 20 presidential board members in every first and second half of the year. On April 16th, the meeting for the first half of 2021 was held to discuss for the solution to be more distinctively competitive and to create a strategy to further maintain its reputation for 100 years.

l The birth of ‘the Five POSCO Corporate Citizenship Brands’ to shape a better society

Same as other content from ‘the Charter of Corporate Citizenship’, POSCO has carried out various projects at the corporate level and understood its role within the society as a member by suggesting solutions for social problems to create a better society. In 2019, the ‘Representative Six Projects’ were selected and subsequently announced publicly to further help people’s understanding of these activities while publicizing the meaning of Corporate Citizenship.

On the other hand, the project reorganization was required as followed by the company’s reaction to climate change, the need for communications on the environment and safety. Its separated projects and achievements by each different group helped expand the role of the management philosophy, ‘Corporate Citizenship’. Finally, the ‘Five POSCO Corporate Citizenship Brands’ were launched for the purpose of having more diverse projects in March 2021.

The brands are divided into five categories: the signature brand, ‘Green With POSCO’ to lead the hydrogen industry in an action of ‘Carbon Neutrality’ and achieve it by 2050’, ‘Together With POSCO’ to create developments together with suppliers and customers, ‘Challenge With POSCO’ to revitalize the venture ecosystem and foster new growth within the industry, ‘Life With POSCO’ to actively resolve social challenges such as a low birth rate and the increase in unemployment rates while ensuring its employees’ safety and happiness. ‘Community With POSCO’ aims to suggest development models for both the community and company to maintain sustainability and coexist together.

More details of the brand projects are shared in ‘An Easy-to-understand Five POSCO Corporate Citizenship Brands’

l Having the moment to share the achievements of the ‘Corporate Citizenship’ projects and researches

POSCO holds an annual event to showcase best practices and achievements. In the annual event in 2019, Tae-won Chey, the Chairman of SK Inc., and Ki-moon Ban, former Secretary-General of the United Nations was invited as special guests to hold lectures in order to further enhance the quality of the event.

The first commemorative performance event around the theme “Corporate, Becoming a Citizen” was held on the 3rd of December 2019, shortly before the COVID19 pandemic occurred. It drew a wide audience with its diverse selection of prepared programs from the commitment to action for the six representative projects, panel discussions, and conferences. Also, visitors had chances to have on-site experience of the ‘Corporate Citizenship’ – touring a public information hall, sharing achievement, visiting booths for the venture platform, charity flea market, and enjoying busking performances, which were all well received by those in attendance.

▲ On December 3rd 2019, the achievement was shared first in Atrium on the 1st floor of the POSCO center. More than 1,000 people including employees, officers from national organizations, experts, and citizens joined and created an atmosphere of joy.

Additionally, the best practices were shared in each category, Sang-young Lee, a leader from POSCO International for Business Section, Yo-han Lee, a leader from POSCO Chemical for People section, Jong-chul Lee, a team leader from POSCO Community Serving Volunteer Group for Society section. Their truthful and humorous stories moved the audience.

On December 8th 2020, the Corporate Citizenship Culture Day was held with the theme of ‘a Path to the Future Management with the Corporate Citizenship’. During the event, Ki-moon Ban, former Secretary-General of the United Nations, gave a special lecture about ‘Sustainable future for the corporate and directions for POSCO with the ‘Corporate Citizenship’ in front of about 10,000 employees.

Moreover, the book with a summary of corporate accomplishments from activities and research on numerous areas including management, economy, and sociology, was released and swiftly had a discussion meeting with the authors and professors.

l Special symposium to celebrate 3 years of the ‘Corporate Citizenship’:
a Path to the Future Management with 3 Years of POSCO’s Corporate Citizenship

It has been three years since the declaration and on 21st July 2021, a special symposium was held to talk about ‘a Path to the Future Management with 3 Years of POSCO’s Corporate Citizenship’. For the event held both online and in-person, important members of the company and academic panels: Jeong-woo Choi, the CEO of POSCO Group, Soo-keun Kwak of the ‘Corporate Citizenship Forum’, an honorary professor of Seoul National University (also a leader of the Corporate Citizenship Advisory Conference), Ho-keun Song , a chair-professor of POSTECH (also a director on Society department of the Corporate Citizenship), Hyeong-goo Mun, an honorary professor of Korea University (also a department director of the Corporate Citizenship–People).

POSCO Group CEO Choi announced ongoing achievements and said, “after the declaration of ‘the Corporate Citizenship’, POSCO reinforces competitiveness in particular business areas such as electric vehicles, environmentally friendly materials, and hydrogen energy business while also building a global collaboration system for expanded use of a by-product of steel production, the virtuous circle system to re-use waste resources and to further the development of hydrogen-based steelmaking. Lastly, the corporate’s accomplishment is to enable people to enhance the safety management policy, and reinforcing facilities, while developing and implementing smart safety technology.”

Not only, Professor William P. Barnett of Stanford University, Professor Jae-goo Kim of Myongji University, Professor Moo-weon Rhee of Yonsei University, Professor Hyeon-sang Shin of Hanyang University and Seong-jin Park, the head of POSCO Industry-Academy-Research Cooperation Office were all invited to give special lectures about the value and achievement of the philosophy.

▲ On the 21st of July, Choi, the CEO of POSCO Group is conducting an online Q&A session with William Barnett, the professor of Stanford University as well as the speaker of the event, marking the three-year anniversary of the declaration.

Professor Barnett explained that “in the times of ESG management, POSCO is actively leading the industry by introducing the management philosophy, ‘the Corporate Citizenship’. The value and standards on others should be suggested too.”

In the following session, a total of 12 corporate case studies were presented and linked the achievements of the POSCO Group with corporate citizenship in collaboration with the five major brands based on research from scholars in the major Korean universities. The results were shown by each of the brand’s case study professors, and executive employees from the corresponding case studies with their results. The presented materials have been published in an E-book format and are available for download on POSCO’s website. (POSCO’s Website – Home)

The POSCO’s Symposium was held to declare corporate citizenship as its management philosophy and everyone involved shared their accomplishments. Corporate Citizenship will be truly achieved only after the Charter of Corporate Citizenship and CCMS cultivates the philosophy to every employee to follow and act accordingly.

In upcoming September, POSCO sessions will be held at the World Knowledge Forum (WKF) arranged by Maekyung Media Group to discuss new possible company roles and shape the future based on the achievement created within the 3 years of Corporate Citizenship. Moreover, at the end of November, the Corporate Citizenship Brand Day will be held for its employees to present and discuss their best practices produced by their experiences and actions with Corporate Citizenship. These events will allow everyone to take a close look at the changes that have been implemented through these times and aid us in becoming a 100-year-old company earning respects by customers, business partners, and suppliers alike.

POSCO marked three years with the declaration of ‘Corporate Citizenship’ in July 2018. POSCO has fiercely worked to accomplish the Corporate Citizenship. Respectively, the Corporate Citizenship has now established itself as a management philosophy to provide the way of future management. Nevertheless, POSCO will still put its effort into shaping a better society, creating higher company value through practicing the Corporate Citizenship with sincerity.

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