CSR Culture & Capitalistic Philanthropy

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Today, people want to look at corporations and see real people doing real things to influence social change. They want the employees to be engaged in philanthropic activities and the executives to be committed to making the world a better, more sustainable place for us all. This has led to huge growth in the area of CSR, or Corporate Social Responsibility.

More companies are implementing philanthropic initiatives and CSR programs into their corporate culture. By doing so, corporations win on three different levels, says Evan Kirkpatrick of Forbes. They become “valuable to clients, profitable for the organization, and [start] positively effecting the world.”

Kirkpatrick calls out three elements as key to moving corporations and other organizations into what he calls “capitalist philanthropy.” First, organizations must choose a cause to stick to. It can be anything from medical research to poverty to the lack of proper medical care in developing nations. The only catch, Kirkpatrick says, is investing in a cause that you, your family, or the community has some connection to—something that has an affect and that you can be passionate about.

Next, there must be some sort of announcement or launch of the CSR “vision.” Though you can also share this information via social media, e-mails, and memos, its main announcement needs to be to an actual, physical room full of people. This is the only surefire way to get others’ attention, explain the situation, and potentially gain support (either in donations or volunteers).

Lastly, Kirkpatrick says that organizations must be able to keep the momentum for CSR going, keep the ball rolling even when there aren’t any rewards or recognition. Communicate any successes with people to keep them interested, informed, engaged, and excited.

Being involved in CSR or “capitalist philanthropy,” as Kirkpatrick calls it, is a great way to not only impact the world in a positive way; it’s a great way to attract positive and passionate people to your organization.