If you keep up with the headlines or social media, you know that more and more companies are considering their role in social issues. We understand that it’s easy to believe that only very large organizations can really make a difference, but small businesses are powerful!
With nearly 50% of Americans working for small businesses, it’s imperative that small businesses are equipped with the knowledge and tools to make a meaningful impact.
So, what’s happening?
No matter the size of a business the impact on the community it serves is an important part of its success. Small Businesses are finding this out more and more as time goes on.
In fact, in a recent survey by Harvard Business Review, 93% of employees believe companies must lead with purpose.
The same survey also said:
“90% of employees who work at companies with a strong sense of purpose say they’re more inspired, motivated, and loyal.”
The interesting part of this research is that these feelings are not exclusive to employees. Consumers are a big part of the picture as well. 70% of consumers are motivated to purchase from companies committed to making the world a better place (HBR, 2021).
Well, there are many different definitions of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).
It boils down to this basic definition:
Corporate Social Responsibility is your ability as a business to meet the needs of your stakeholders, customers, and community while remaining accountable for your actions.
One thing we like to point out in this definition is that responsibility is followed up by accountability. It isn’t just about talking to the talk but walking the walk as well.
We understand you are just trying to make a profit and build your business. All this CSR stuff sounds like a lot. The reality is that there are exponential wins for your business when you properly layout a CSR strategy. Many of the small businesses we work with see improvements in the following areas:
Imagine just for a moment an employee that is a raving fan of your company. They come into work every day and are excited to contribute to the mission and vision of your business. They work harder than anyone else and ensure your customers and vendors are taken care of with the highest of standards.
They leave work every day happy and excited for what the next day might bring. While they are at the grocery store, they tell the cashier about how great your company is. They hop on Facebook talking about how happy your company makes them. They become your brand ambassador in the community.
They recommend your company to everyone they know. Can you guess what happens next? More revenue, better profits, community support, and happy vendors and customers. Now, imagine having 10 employees like that. Think of the return on your investment into CSR.
CSR goes beyond just your small business. It applies to your interactions within your community. And, to be honest with you, it is in your best interest as a small business owner to build trust within your community.
When we work with small businesses on CSR, we often see them:
Look, if you haven’t figured out that the community around a small business is the backbone of its success, we have work to do. Your community can make or break your success and showing them that you support them and want to contribute to them will win over the hearts of your community. That will lead to… you guessed it… more customers and more revenue!
“Acronis SCS is an American cyber protection company that exclusively serves the U.S. public sector. Acronis SCS has a dual social purpose: preserve U.S. national security through public sector cyber protection and reduce the high U.S. veteran underemployment rate” (2020 best corporate…, 2020). This dual-purpose has led to revenue growth, employee retention, and high customer satisfaction/retention.
In 2019, they “created a nonprofit, Acronis SCSVets, to provide veterans and military spouses with the internationally-recognized credentials, skills, and resources needed to pursue self-sustaining cyber careers at zero cost to them” (2020 best corporate…, 2020). By creating this nonprofit, they are not only positively impacting their community, but also increasing employee engagement and giving employees a sense of purpose.
The Corporate Social Responsibility for Small Business Course will allow you to take control. Click below!
2020 best corporate steward – small and middle-market business finalists. U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation. (2020, September 24). Retrieved November 11, 2021, from https://www.uschamberfoundation.org/citizens-awards/meet-2020-citizens-awards-finalists/2020-best-corporate-steward-small-and-middle.
Stobierski, T. (2021, June 15). 15 eye-opening corporate social responsibility statistics. Business Insights – Blog. Retrieved November 11, 2021, from https://online.hbs.edu/blog/post/corporate-social-responsibility-statistics?tempview=logoconvert.