Some big-name charities have come under fire in the media for failing to protect the very people that they were meant to be helping in recent weeks.
So, when we got the Manchester team together to talk about how we can improve the business, I was pleased to hear that – rather than being put off from giving – the team actually wanted to increase its charitable activities and saw the business benefits of corporate social responsibility.
And I’m aware that this sentiment is being heard in similar meetings at Haines Watts offices around the country.
Business benefits of corporate social responsibility
We already have several corporate social responsibility programmes in place where we ‘give back’ – we donate money rather than send out cards at Christmas, we collect for a community food bank and we take part in various fundraiser events to support our favourite causes.
The difference is that there now seems to be a real appetite to personally get out into the community and work for local causes, rather than raise money for larger organisations, including those operating in far-away places.
Business with a beating heart
Empowering our people to act on these impulses has become an important part of our business development plans. We, like every organisation, need great talent.
And, of course, it is much more cost-effective to retain experienced employees who already know your products and services and understand your clients’ needs than find and train new ones.
So how do you do that? I often talk to clients about how building a culture with a strong emphasis on corporate social responsibility is a great cornerstone for such a strategy because being an employer of choice means good people come to you, and stay for the long-term.
Customers and suppliers become more loyal too – and giving back gives you something to shout about in your marketing. It also costs a lot less than managing high staff turnover.
So, as we discussed how we can step up our efforts at Haines Watts in 2018, we’re looking at allocating time in the working week when staff can do community work, along with many other ideas which are all part of our corporate social responsibility programmes which benefit both the business and community.
As everyone left the meeting, you could see the satisfaction on their faces. Yes, it is good support local causes and be active in the community. But the true value is in the morale boost it provides to your people – they feel valued and listened to. I believe this does more for team building than any corporate day out could achieve. I think it really is time businesses acted for the greater good.
Have you felt the business benefits of corporate social responsibility within your business?