Corporate Citizenship Blog

Colleen Olphert, Director, Membership and Member Services

Colleen leads the strategy and operations related to the recruitment and retention of member companies. Since joining the center in 2001 Colleen has had thousands of conversations with business professionals on the challenges and opportunities corporate citizenship presents to them. In her current role she uses her knowledge and experience to provide direction on content connected to member services. Prior to joining the Center, Colleen worked in the non-profit sector. She received her MBA and MSW from Boston College.
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Recent Posts

Employee Leave Policies : eBay Raises the Bar

Posted by Colleen Olphert, Director, Membership and Member Services on Jun 17, 2016 12:57:33 PM

The following is an excerpt from the most recent issue of The Corporate Citizen magazine. To learn more about how companies are using corporate citizenship to achieve business and social value, check out our issue archive.

As a global commerce leader that connects millions of buyers and sellers around the world, eBay empowers people and creates opportunity. In late 2015, the company decided to make a large investment in the engine that drives this success—its people. In December 2015, the commerce leader announced new paid family and medical leave policies, joining the ranks of tech companies such as Google that have recognized that a healthy and engaged workforce is key to retaining talent and staying competitive.ParentalLeave.png

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Topics: Management Practices, Employee Health and Wellness

The Role of Reporting in Achieving a Sustainable Economy

Posted by Colleen Olphert, Director, Membership and Member Services on Jun 9, 2016 9:08:16 AM

The following is excerpted from Issue 16 of The Corporate Citizen. To learn more about how sustainability reporting can help inform and advance your efforts, joining us for our GRI and CDP courses. As a certified training partner for both GRI and CDP, we’ll help you understand and utilize two of the leading sustainability frameworks to drive both social and environmental progress—and business results.

In 2015, world leaders came together to sign the Paris Agreement on Climate, and the UN unveiled 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)—complete with 169 targets—that aim to eradicate poverty and hunger, foster safe and inclusive societies, and halt global warming by 2030. Here, a group of top business and sustainability leaders discuss business practices that will assure progress toward these gamechanging sustainability targets.BCCCC_UPS_panel.jpg

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Topics: Reporting

Banfield Pet Hospital: Creating a Better World for Pets

Posted by Colleen Olphert, Director, Membership and Member Services on May 11, 2016 12:10:00 PM

The following is excerpted from Issue 15 of The Corporate Citizen. To learn more about how you can engage your employees and contribute to your communities through employee volunteering programs, consider joining us in Chicago on September 7-8, 2016 for our Employee Volunteer Programs with Purpose course.

Community involvement efforts—once a way for well-intentioned companies to connect with people in their area—are now an essential part of corporate citizenship programs and have evolved to become a strategic component of business.BanfieldPetHospital.jpg

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Topics: Member Spotlight

Employee volunteering and engagement in action with Insperity

Posted by Colleen Olphert, Director, Membership and Member Services on Apr 28, 2016 12:19:51 PM

Here at the Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship, we’re asked to provide insight and expertise on the complete spectrum of corporate citizenship practices. Our more than 420 member companies are interested in issues ranging from environmental impact reporting to nonprofit board placements—as well as every area in between. One issue that is consistently among the most popular topic of discussion, however, is one of the foundational elements of early CSR—employee volunteer programs. A main focus of corporate citizenship programs year-round, employee volunteer initiatives are especially popular now—during the spring and summer months—when the warmer weather offers a broader array of available activities.

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The focus on employee volunteer programs is hardly surprising. Employee volunteer programs offer a myriad of benefits to both businesses and the communities they serve. Research finds that they encourage stronger employee engagement, increase retention, and better job performance. The Center’s own research supports these findings. Our 2015 Community Involvement Study finds that more than 90 percent of companies list improved employee engagement among the top three benefits of an employee volunteer program. Furthermore, companies themselves have found empirical support for the relationship between volunteering and employee engagement. Of the 60 percent of companies that measure the connection between engagement in their employee volunteer program and employee engagement, 89 percent found a positive correlation (see Figure A).

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Topics: Employee Engagement, Member Spotlight

Salesforce: Engaging Employees in the Aloha Culture

Posted by Colleen Olphert, Director, Membership and Member Services on Apr 13, 2016 7:30:00 AM

The following is excerpted from the most recent issue of the Corporate Citizen

Employee engagement is key to company performance, leading to positive effects such as higher productivity, improved work quality, and decreased job turnover. Employees want to be involved in their work, enthusiastic about the organization they work for, and committed to their fellow workers. Yet less than a third of U.S. workers were engaged in their jobs in 2014, according to Gallup.

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Topics: Employee Engagement, Member Spotlight

ArcelorMittal invests in building a cleaner future

Posted by Colleen Olphert, Director, Membership and Member Services on Feb 17, 2016 6:47:30 AM

ArcelorMittal’s commitment to carbon reduction efforts were on display during the 2016 International Corporate Citizenship Conference, where they served as the event’s carbon offset sponsor. 

In order to address the world’s most pressing environmental, social, and governance (ESG) issues, companies must continually search out and implement new ways to address their impacts and invest in sustainable solutions for today and for the future.

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Topics: Corporate Citizenship, Membership, Environmental Sustainability

Case Study: Aligning workplace giving, corporate philanthropy, and volunteering at KPMG

Posted by Colleen Olphert, Director, Membership and Member Services on Dec 23, 2015 7:20:00 AM

The following is excerpted from the Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship’s most recent research report, the Community Involvement Study 2015. KPMG_Corporate_Giving.jpgTo learn more about corporate giving, consider joining us in Austin, TX on Feb. 23-25, 2016 for Corporate Giving: An Introduction to Corporate and Foundation Giving

To most effectively address social issues through community involvement efforts, many companies take a holistic approach, developing efforts that work in tandem to achieve the greatest possible business and social value. Workplace giving efforts are an important component of these efforts, and are often used by companies to augment the more traditional corporate giving and volunteer initiatives.

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Topics: Corporate Philanthropy, Community Involvement, Corporate Volunteerism, Case Study

Farmers Insurance helps launch a Disaster Recovery Playbook

Posted by Colleen Olphert, Director, Membership and Member Services on Nov 24, 2015 9:00:45 AM

The following is excerpted from the Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship’s research report, the Community Involvement Study 2015.

Farmers_NJ_Fav_Team_.jpgThe 2015 Community Involvement Study finds that nearly all companies have a community involvement strategy or are in the process of setting one up. The most effective are those that align their programs with overall business objectives—bringing the unique skills and expertise of employees to bear on some of society’s toughest challenges.

As a property and casualty insurance company, Farmers Insurance knows well what challenges people face when they encounter natural disasters. Building from their core competency, Farmers has a dedicated team of staff members who handle only disaster response and are prepared to react in a moment’s notice.

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Topics: Employee Engagement, Corporate Communication Strategy, Corporate Volunteerism, Management Practices

How does community involvement benefit the business?

Posted by Colleen Olphert, Director, Membership and Member Services on Nov 16, 2015 12:30:00 PM

Since 1995, the Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship has studied how companies invest in communities and how these efforts connect to their businesses—and has published the findings in the Community Involvement study. Over the past 20 years, we’ve witnessed the role of community involvement evolve to become a strategic component of business.

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Topics: Corporate Citizenship, Corporate Philanthropy, Community Involvement

Applied Materials’ Education Initiative aims to increase graduation rates and student success

Posted by Colleen Olphert, Director, Membership and Member Services on Oct 17, 2015 8:30:00 AM

The forthcoming 2015 Community Involvement Survey illustrates that many companies are addressing relevant social issues, with a prominent focus on K-12 education. The survey shows that nearly 55 percent of companies include education among their top issues for attention and investment. Tweet: 55% of companies include #education among their top issues for attention and #community investment.
With nearly 20 percent of students failing to graduate on time, or at all, corporations are making investments to try and increase student achievement and graduation rates for a more educated workforce.[i]

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Topics: Partnerships, Community Involvement, Employee Engagement

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Welcome to the Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship blog, we are your resource for corporate citizenship insights, research, trending topics and executive education. Our blog is a place to exchange ideas and learn about corporate citizenship.

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