Keywords: corporate sustainability, business size, performance outcomes, triple bottom line, Australia, firm size, corporate sustainable development, SMEs, small and medium-sized enterprises, sustainable business practices, social performance, environmental performance, financial performance, ANOVA, large firms
Does the business size matter on corporate sustainable performance? The Australian business case
While a growing majority of research studies have concentrated on triple bottom line public reporting in large organisations, the review of past research suggests there seems to be limited support and importance given to small and medium sized businesses. This paper attempts to examine whether business size matters when it comes to corporate sustainability. To achieve this, we have conducted an empirical study to investigate sustainable business practices in small, medium and large organisations. With a sample of 80 different Australia-based firms, we have examined various parameters attributing to corporate sustainability and have arrived at three kinds of performance outcomes (factors) that concur with triple bottom line principles, which we term as: 1) corporate environmental performance outcome (CEPO); 2) corporate social performance outcome (CSPO); 3) corporate financial performance outcome (CFPO). The results of the ANOVA analysis of these factors against business size have been discussed and the significantly higher CEPO in large size businesses than in small or medium size businesses have been explored. This paper also unearths the implications of these results on corporate sustainability and recommends possible improvements to increase the focus around environmental sustainability.