Entrepreneurs are passionate, ambitious, hard workers. The most successful entrepreneurs often come from nothing and build their legacy from scratch. Beyond being driven and committed, there are many traits required for building a successful business from the ground up. One of which is the importance of giving back to your community-- whether local or global-- and watering your roots.
Corporate Social Responsibility & The Triple Bottom Line
Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) refers to a for-profit business’ efforts to balance the scales of the environmental and social impact they have on a community. Many businesses opt to develop a CSR policy that goes beyond offsetting their impact and affecting real change in the world around them. These companies tend to take the Triple Bottom Line approach in their corporate accounting, evaluating People and Planet in addition to the usual Profit.
The Benefits of Giving Back
There are numerous benefits to taking a philanthropic approach to building your business. While funds are often limited for start-ups, giving back to your community can actually help your business grow, offsetting the cost of your efforts. Here are a few examples of how your business can benefit:
Consumers enjoy knowing that their hard earned dollars are going to more than an executive’s vacation fund. In fact, studies have shown that consumers perceive products or services from a company with a strong CSR plan to be of better quality. Your brand is your business. Conveying your brand as one that wants to give rather than take will encourage consumers to give you their business.
Enjoy Your Work
Both you and your employees will feel better about working hard when it makes a difference in the world around you. These actions fuel the social aspect of your Whole Person Development, creating happiness and self-satisfaction. Strong CSR policies have been proven to increase employee job satisfaction, decreasing the turnover rate and boosting productivity levels.
Create a Better Community
Many entrepreneurs start a business in the community they call home, supporting the local economy. By supporting local initiatives, they are bettering the community in which they (and their families) live and work. Should a business choose to support a broader global initiative, they are still making an impact on the world we all live in.
When it comes to building a network, it’s time to think outside the traditional networking events and meetings. You might meet your next big client at a fundraising barbecue for the ASPCA or while selling raffle tickets for the local hospice. If nothing else, you’re putting your brand out there in a positive light, further boosting your notoriety and brand image.
How You Can Give Back
Think outside the box and beyond the monetary donations when investigating ways you can give back to your community. Here are a few options:
Partake in community events as a volunteer
Donate some goods or services to a local fundraiser
Offer your services for free once a certain metric is met. For example: for every nine profitable hours you donate one hour of work to a local initiative.
Create free information sessions relevant to your line of work
Ally with a local not-for-profit organization
As an entrepreneur, you have the flexibility to help a cause that speaks to your heart. If you’re an employee, you have the power to bring awareness of a cause you support to your superiors in a philanthropic company.
Bloom’s mission is not only to create passion through petals but to help others find their passion as well. That’s why every facet of the business is designed to give back to the community that sustains us, by:
Offering one year of executive coaching to a veteran re-entering the civilian workforce for every 50 green walls sold.
Donating 10% of holiday decor sales to local homeless children initiatives.
Offering one year of executive coaching to a local female entrepreneur for every 1,000 floral arrangements sold.
Donating 10% of all event decor sales to local animal shelters.
Donating 10% of all interior plant sales to local environmental initiatives.
Donating an additional 10% to each category that meets their annual targets.
If everyone does their small part to better the world, we can all become one conscious whole.