MTG's Corporate Responsibility programme, Modern Responsibility, was first introduced in 2004, and has now been an integrated part of our business for four full years. Acting responsibly towards our stakeholders has always been important for the Group, but with Modern Responsibility it has become more comprehensive and concrete, making it easier for us to incorporate true responsibility across the Group.
Maximising the power of entertainment
The programme is overseen by the Executive Management and coordinated by a central Modern Responsibility Coordinator, with local ambassadors in each country. The programme Modern Responsibility enables the Group to deliver a consistently high level of performance, forming the platform for our future development. This supports the company’s mission statement “Maximising the power of entertainment”.
Modern Responsibility has not decreased in importance or relevance as a result of the global economic downturn. In fact, the opposite is the case; we believe that in the present financial climate it is more crucial than ever for us to focus on our core values and conduct our business in an ethical and responsible manner. Focusing on cost control, something we have always done anyway, can make us even more creative in the ways we support charities, train and develop our employees and negotiate with suppliers.
Our key stakeholders
We have recognised seven key stakeholder groups towards whom we always seek to act responsibly:
- Non Governmental Organisations (NGOs)
Modern Responsibility can be divided into five measurable key areas, each one reflecting our responsibilities towards several of these stakeholder groups. We believe this division helps making Modern Responsibility easier to comprehend and manage, as it takes a holistic approach to the Group’s important non-financial impacts.
Responsibility to the community
Broadcast media is very powerful in the modern society. Reaching more than 100 million people in 29 countries brings us a great deal of responsibility towards the surrounding communities. Therefore we are committed to maximising the good power of our entertainment, as well as minimising any negative impact that media might have on the society.
MTG has a long tradition of working with local NGOs, including Nationell samverkan för psykisk hälsa, NSPH, and the Cancer Fund in Sweden and Psykiatrifonden in Denmark. We focus our community initiatives on increasing awareness of mental health and supporting environmental causes. Mental health is a highly misunderstood topic with many associated myths and taboos, which is why we have chosen to promote it both internally and through our TV and radio stations. In 2008, the airtime we donated to NGOs was worth more than 77 million Swedish krona and raised funds of 56 million krona.
We seek also to air programmes that present social and environmental issues constructively, such as our Swedish own production programme Efterlyst (“Wanted”) that fights crime with the public’s help, and You are what you eat, where viewers are encouraged to adopt healthier eating habits.
Responsibility to the planet
Despite the broadcasting industry’s relatively small impact on the environment, we believe tackling climate change is everyone’s responsibility and we take it seriously. Our central environmental policy has been implemented in all MTG offices. This policy comprises management and office level initiatives for a greener work environment, such as purchasing furniture made of wood from sustainable sources. Also the Group’s travel policy is very strict; we only travel to meetings if video conferencing is not an option. We also don’t give out company cars unless absolutely necessary and even then they are environmentally friendly.
MTG Radio in Sweden is the Group’s pioneer in green work, as they are currently aiming for the ISO 14001 certificate for their environmental work. The rest of MTG is going to implement best practise from Radio’s experiences and strive towards “going green” in all operations. In Stockholm we are working towards decreasing our ecological footprint as the new headquarters for MTG Sweden are being built to be energy efficient, under the EU project GreenBuilding.
The Annual Report 2008 is available on the company’s website, to avoid unnecessary use of paper and the environmental impact of distribution.
MTG’s code of conduct, our 12 key rules and mission statement are established guidelines on how we do business and what is expected from our employees. These principles are communicated to all staff to indicate the Group’s moral and ethical standards and to ensure compliance with law. All MTG employees are regularly kept updated on any important matters through the intranet, internal newsletters, meetings and emails.
At MTG we rely on having skilled staff and therefore see investing in employee development as essential. Our internal training department, MTG Academy, offers full training programmes for management and sales staff, as well as individual courses for anyone in MTG to attend. In 2008 the Academy offered a total of 223 training days.
We arrange annual awards to reward our employees. The purpose of these awards is to motivate our staff and celebrate the “Best of the Best”. We have also established an Innovation website where the best employee innovation gets rewarded and commercialised each quarter.
Our core business, broadcasting entertainment, is regulated by the Audiovisual Media Services EU-directive and the relevant national broadcast regulations. We follow the strictest of local laws and consistently seek to be pro-active and self-critical in our compliance. We have clear internal policies regarding the scheduling and airing of programmes, which are overseen by our experienced Legal and Compliance departments.
We constantly strive to develop the content and quality of our services. We are committed to meeting our customers’ needs by implementing new and improved services, as well as launching new channels. Since January 2008, 15 new own branded channels have been added to our portfolio.
We believe in clear communication with our customers, and seek regular feedback from them. The pricing of our products and services is always transparent, and this information is easily available online. We carry out regular customer satisfaction surveys, conduct customer focus group research and offer customer service facilities for feedback. Our customer service teams offer support in local languages and are continuously trained on our products and services to ensure professional and effective customer care.
The main authority regulating TV advertising on our channels is the Advertising Standards Authority in the UK. In any advertising, the protection of young viewers is always a top priority for us. Our Compliance Team makes sure that only socially responsible product advertising is broadcast during children’s programmes.
In 2008 we…
- raised funds of 56 million Swedish krona to NGOs
- donated airtime to NGOs worth over 77 million krona
- took the first steps towards measuring our environmental performance
- had the first radio platform in the world to go green: MTG Radio Sweden
- started the building of “green” MTG Sweden headquarters
- installed new video conferencing equipment to further reduce business travel
- recruited a full-time CR coordinator to further increase our focus and capacity on responsibility issues
- recruited a central internal communications manager.