Purpose Beyond Profits

More than eight out of 10 consumers want business to place at least equal weight on society’s interests as its business interests.  Yet businesses are struggling to address social issues.

That is according to Carol Cone, an internationally-recognized expert on cause marketing and branding and a speaker at Business4Better this week.

“Purpose is the reason for an organization’s being beyond profits,” said Cone.  “It creates differentiation, fuels innovation, growth and sales, builds and protects reputation, and engages and inspires customers and employees. “ Continue reading

Do Great Companies Make Great States?

This post is by guest blogger Bahar Gidwani, co-founder and CEO of CSRhub which provides access to corporate social responsibility and sustainability ratings and information on 7,000+ companies from 135 industries in 90 countries. This article previously appeared on the CSRhub blog

“I’d like to thank the great citizens of our wonderful state…”  How many times have you heard this greeting?  It implies that good citizens are responsible for building a better community.  The Citizen’s United Supreme Court case added to the view that corporations are “citizens” in certain senses.  So, do “good” corporate citizens contribute also to building “good” states?  Some intriguing research on this topic is now possible thanks to a new corporate social responsibility ratings database from CSRHub.

It is hard to compare corporate and state social performance without making some fairly broad assumptions.  For companies, we can measure how they treat the environment, their communities, and their employees.  We can also assess how well companies are governed by their investors, boards, and management teams.  For states or other communities, we can measure things such as education levels, unemployment levels, divorce rates, or how many crimes are committed. Continue reading

11 Facts About Mid-Size Companies and CSR (Survey Results)

When we think of corporate social responsibility (CSR), so often we think of large companies with deep pockets that have dedicated staff to run employee and community engagement programs, or small start-ups that are birthed with the gene of sustainability in place.

Last month Business4Better took on the challenge of exploring just how immersed in community engagement efforts mid-size companies were.

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The greatest potential for doing good is with the mid-market. “If the Middle Market were a country, its GDP would rank it as the fourth largest economy in the world,” states  Scott Vaughan in a previous B4B blog post.

So we surveyed 173 business professionals from mid-size companies (100-5000 employees) about CSR to gauge the status and plans for community involvement. Continue reading

10 Twitter Accounts to Follow for Earthday

Here on the Business4Better blog we talk about all facets of corporate social responsibility, CSR, but in honor of earthday, today we are going to focus on the environment and sustainable existence.

To start the day on the right foot, here are my top ten Twitter accounts to follow to be ‘in the know’ on the topics of sustainability: Continue reading

Five Simple Reasons Your Business Will Profit from CSR

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is quickly becoming a term that cannot be left out of the conversation when planning a company’s future. And that goes for all companies, no matter what the size.

CSR is not just for ‘corporations.’

Employees, customers and investors are making choices that give preference to businesses that have a positive impact on the communities they live, work and do business in. And that will impact your bottom line.

Here are five very basic reasons your business will profit by considering your social responsibility: Continue reading

Top 10 CSR Pros To Follow On Twitter

Twitter.comSocial Media is often thought of as a place to express oneself to the world; sometimes selfishly and for personal gain, and sometimes for the betterment of the world around us. It has proved to be a powerful tool for social good.

People are using social media to organize and create a better world.

No where is this more evident than in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives. Every step a company makes, whether it be good or bad, is easily broadcast over social and consumers expect organizations to be responsible citizens in their communities more than ever.

With that in mind, below is a list of the most influential and, in our opinion, interesting CSR thought leaders to follow on Twitter. Continue reading

4 Hours and 40 Tablets Make a Difference at Grandma’s House

Last week I received a call from Julie Cole, director of Grandma’s House. She told me she still can’t believe all the help they received through our most recent [email protected] project.

It turns out we touched them as much as they touched us.

Grandma’s House is an amazing inter-generational nursing home at the Orlando Health & Rehabilitation Center (OHRC). The nonprofit has created a very unique and special family—both young and old with severe disabilities living together under one roof.

Channel@Work at Grandma's House

[email protected] at Grandma's House

On Continue reading

How Appirio is Tapping Its Silver Lining to Help The Community

For many companies, getting started can be the hardest part of any community partnership program.

Appirio started small at just the 100 employee mark,  picking a few key areas and working with employees to understand their ideas and get them involved. In the beginning it felt like a bunch of events strung together, not a program. As they grew, Appirio figured out how to more gracefully interweave business objectives with their CSR and community involvement. At the top of the list was leading with their strengths in tech talent and resources to make a difference and strong reliance on employee participation. This also helps to have impact on an ad hoc, dynamic budget. Continue reading

Open Call for Presenters for 2013 CSR Conference

Business4Better has opened its call for presenters for the 2013 Conference and Expo. B4B is looking for submissions from presenters with deep knowledge, passion, and innovative thinking in the areas of corporate community engagement, high-impact corporate social responsibility (CSR), skilled and pro-bono employee volunteering, and business / nonprofit partnerships.

Robert Kennedy 1963 - National Archives

The B4B content will help representatives from medium enterprises and nonprofits achieve the following:

Drive partnerships into the core business for maximum business and social impact

  • How to enhance and improve any business function with nonprofit partnerships
  • Getting internal business support for nonprofit partnerships that allows social efforts to grow to scale
  • Research findings on the business nonprofit partnerships Continue reading

The Role of SMEs in Corporate Social Responsibility

I read a really terrific article by Paul Klein in Forbes yesterday called Why Has Corporate Social Responsibility Stalled?   The Midmarket is the Greatest Weapon the world has

Particularly interesting to me was the following question Paul posed to Aron Cramer, president and CEO of BSR, Business for Social Responsibility:

Paul Klein: The vast majority of economic value is created by small and medium-sized businesses that don’t have the knowledge or resources to operationalize CSR. Is there an opportunity to engage small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in CSR and deliver social results on a scale that dwarfs what we’re seeing now? Continue reading