Corporate Citizenship Perspectives

Corporate citizenship goals beyond 'better': How to get where you want to go

Posted by Katherine V. Smith, Executive Director on Oct 31, 2017 3:15:00 PM

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“To improve is to change, to be perfect is to change often.” – Winston Churchill

TabletwithIssue22.jpgWinston Churchill is considered one of the greatest strategic minds in modern history. He not only led Britain through World War II, he played an active role in the passage of the People's Budget—which introduced major social welfare reform programs—established Britain's first minimum wage, and even won the Nobel Prize for

 literature. He understood that continual progress could only be achieved through constant adaptation.

As corporate citizenship professionals, you are tasked with creating both the world in which we want to do business, AND the world in which we want to live. It's a lofty mission, one that requires us to challenge the status quo and innovate to create radical change.

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Topics: Engaging Employees, Corporate Community Involvement, Value of Corporate Citizenship, Strategy, Inclusion, Signature Programs

Measuring progress toward a bold goal

Posted by Colleen Olphert, Director, Membership and Member Services on Oct 27, 2017 10:00:00 AM

Humana.ImpactMeasurement.pngThe following is excerpted from Issue 19 of The Corporate Citizen. To learn more about how you can demonstrate the value of your corporate citizenship programs through data and metrics, consider joining us Dec. 6-8 in Pheonix, AZ for our Measurement and Evaluation course, also available online Jan. 8-Mar. 2, 2018 . 

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Topics: Health & Wellness, Impact Measurement, Corporate Community Involvement, Value of Corporate Citizenship, Signature Programs

Engaging Employees at All Levels

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Every company aspires to have an engaged workforce in which employees are involved, focused, and committed to their jobs. Engaged employees are beneficial to businesses because they work harder, produce stronger results, and stay with the company longer.[1],[2],[3]

One of the greatest challenges of employee engagement is to identify each employee’s needs and motivations in order to determine how to best engage them. Complicating this challenge is the fact that some companies may have a disparate workforce that requires different engagement tactics.

For example, research indicates that employees at different stages of their career pursue certain engagements opportunities while rejecting others (see Figure A).[4] Employees in the early stage of their career are interested primarily in opportunities for recognition and networking in order to establish themselves and advance their career. While they don’t have much money to donate at this point in their lives, they’re likely to show up at volunteer opportunities—especially if senior leaders are present. On the other hand, mid-career employees tend to be more pressed for time, sandwiched by caretaking responsibilities for both children and aging family members. These employees prefer opportunities for recognition, education, and getting their family involved. Finally, late-career employees are motivated by the opportunity to build a legacy or mentor a younger colleague and, because their salaries have peaked, they are more likely to contribute financially to important causes.

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Topics: Engaging Employees, Value of Corporate Citizenship, Culture, Workforce

Drivers of corporate citizenship: Resilience, responsibility, results.

Posted by Katherine V. Smith, Executive Director on Oct 2, 2017 11:52:03 AM

International-Corporate-Citizenship-Conference_Vertical.pngA few months ago, I wrote about the importance of operational resilience, and how corporate citizenship can play a role in helping companies survive and thrive. In order to compete and prosper over the long term—companies should do the work ahead of time that allows them to PASS through disruptions. To PASS, in short, is to:

Predict and prepare: Be proactive, not reactive.

Align your program with business strategy: Scan for risks, do what you can to avert them, and have a plan “B”.  

Sponsorship: Enlist groups across and beyond the organization to make sure that everyone knows their role and why it is important. 

Systems thinking: Consider technology systems, business processes, AND all of the people who interact with them.  How can you build flexibility and redundancy in the systems so that if one node in your network is compromised, you can continue to operate?

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Topics: Conference, Impact Measurement, Value of Corporate Citizenship, Disaster Relief, Participation

Ecosystems create value

Posted by Katherine V. Smith, Executive Director on Apr 5, 2017 1:30:13 PM

On Monday, March 27, I had the pleasure of welcoming more than 550 CSR professionals to the Center’s 2017 International Corporate Citizenship Conference, and had the opportunity to share my thoughts on the event’s theme: Corporate Citizenship Ecosystems. Below you can find a video and a transcript excerpting my remarks:

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Topics: Corporate Citizenship, Partnerships, Responsible Corporate Leadership, Value of Corporate Citizenship

Tracking progress toward environmental sustainability goals

Posted by Stewart Rassier, Director of Executive Education on Feb 24, 2017 10:04:02 AM

Today’s companies face substantial pressure from stakeholders—both internal and external—to monitor and report on a variety of environmental metrics. The benefits to the company are clear, as research shows that successfully managing a company’s environmental footprint can strengthen a firm’s financial performance[i], help them maintain that performance over the long term[ii], improve the company’s image,[iii] and identify and mitigate potential risks to operations.[iv]

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Topics: Environment, Sustainability Reporting, Value of Corporate Citizenship

Corporate Citizen Magazine Issue 18: Data Make Meaning

Posted by Patricia MacKenzie, Director of Marketing & Communications on Oct 14, 2016 8:56:54 AM

The Fall 2016 issue of the Corporate Citizen Magazine, "Data Make Meaning," is now available!

TabletwithIssue18.jpgIn this issue, you'll learn about companies that are collecting and using data to create innovative programs, address social and environmental issues, and measure and report on their progress.

Highlights include:

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Topics: Corporate Citizenship, Partnerships, Reporting, Value of Corporate Citizenship, Data Protection

The business case for youth mentoring

Posted by Stewart Rassier, Director of Executive Education on Sep 28, 2016 8:00:00 AM

In the United States, approximately 5.6 million youth between the ages of 16 and 24 are disconnected from school and work, and many are not getting the support they need to drive greater engagement. One in three young people— nearly 16 million— will reach the age of 19 without having ever had a mentor in their life of any kind. These rates are even higher for at-risk youth, who experience higher rates of poverty, limited networks, and under-resourced schools.[1] Research shows that even one positive, consistent, caring, relationship with an adult can offset nearly every risk factor in a young person’s life and improve their chances of success.

Today, companies of all sizes are recognizing the role they can play in filling this “mentorship gap” and have simultaneously discovered that they can use mentorship programs to realize both business and corporate responsibility goals. According to the Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship’s most recent Community Involvement Study, companies consistently rank youth programs as one of the most important social issues addressed through their community involvement efforts (See Figure A).

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Topics: Management, Value of Corporate Citizenship, Business Case, Youth, Return on Investment (ROI)

Continual improvement at Dogeared: For the business and the community

Posted by Colleen Olphert, Director, Membership and Member Services on Sep 12, 2016 3:37:00 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 by developing a strategic corporate citizenship plan, consider joining us on online or in Los Angeles on February 7-9, 2018 for our Corporate Citizenship Strategy: Connect to Your Business and Community course.

For companies with a smaller operational footprint—even though they may have national or even global brand exposure—great value can be achieved by developing a foundational ethos, applying that mission to every aspect of business, from design through delivery, and incorporating it into community involvement strategy.

Founded in 1991 by Marcia Maizel-Clarke and Merlin Clarke, Dogeared, a global accessories brand that focuses on handcrafted jewelry, was built on the premise of community. The company sources the majority of products and materials locally from vendors around the Los Angeles area. Local artisans handcraft all of the company’s unique charms, and jewels are designed and assembled on-site in their Southern California studio.

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Topics: Partnerships, Member Spotlight, Value of Corporate Citizenship, Strategy, Reputation, Culture, Brand, Signature Programs

Data philanthropy: The high-tech future of social impact

Posted by Stewart Rassier, Director of Executive Education on Aug 30, 2016 10:36:25 AM

Modern businesses use data primarily for competitive advantage—to give their customers the best experience, to gain entry into new markets, to become faster, smarter, better. Whether they are gathering data on their customers’ purchasing habits or planning flight patterns, companies are collecting more detailed information than ever.

How this information is collected, stored, and used is a growing area of corporate citizenship focus. As reported in the Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship’s 2014 State of Corporate Citizenship, nearly 80 percent of executives consider consumer data protection and privacy to be a top corporate citizenship priority (see Figure A).

SOCC-Figure16.jpg

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Topics: Philanthropy, Value of Corporate Citizenship, Data Protection

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The Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship is your resource for insights, research, trending topics, and executive education in the corporate citizenship field.

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