Member Benefit of the Month

Tool: OneOC's Board Connection Program

How It Works:
Accelerated or Premium Members are eligible to receive access to prospective board members through our Board Connection program which teaches prospective board members on the landscape of Orange County’s nonprofit section and the art of successfully serving on a board. After completing the training, individuals receive exclusive access to OneOC’s online database of Orange County nonprofits and their vacant board positions for a potential match.

Member Benefit of the Month

Tool: Community Involvement Strategic Plan Template

Testimonial: 

This template will provide support on aligning your community involvement with business interests

Name: Bea Boccalandro

Title: President of VeraWorks

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Recent Blog

Title: OneOC's Company Connection Breakfast

Join OneOC on March 22 to learn how to leverage your company's giving and employee volunteering. ... READ MORE

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Title: What Does Business Have To Do With Corporate Community Involvement?

In today’s hyper-competitive climate, businesses can’t afford to altruistically donate resources, at least not a significant amount. For community involvement (or Corporate Social Responsibility, if you prefer) to have a meaningful scale and be sustainable, it needs to reap business benefits. ... READ MORE

You asked... We answered!

Stephanie asked:

Skills-based volunteering is the talk of the town, but won’t employees resist doing as volunteers what they do all day as work?

Bea answered:

True – doing something all workday and then doing more of it without getting paid is unappealing. But this is hardly an accurate description of skills-based volunteering. A short story will illustrate this.</p> <p>Brad (fictitious name), a senior executive at a British a professional services firm, was only minutes into a twenty-minute presentation when an audience member raised her hand and her voice.</p> <p>“You’re boring! Can we do something else?”</p> <p>Brad had signed up to give career presentations at elementary schools, thinking it would be “lovely and light.” It turned out to be deeply reflective and intensely educational, although he laughed heartily when he told me this story.</p> <p>Amy, a freckled eight year old girl in pink coveralls gave Brad a scathing performance review. At work, his team got paid to listen to every syllable he uttered no mater how lackluster. Yet, thinking back to their expressionless faces staff meeting after staff meeting, Brad realized he had been boring them for years. They simply weren’t willing to deliver a negative message to their boss.</p> <p>Before meeting Amy, Brad was interested in giving career presentations to children. After meeting Amy, he was deeply committed. Why? Because Amy had made his community engagement efforts professionally challenging. Her challenge led him to read books, videotape himself and pay attention to every syllable he uttered. Suddenly, a “lovely and light” experience was riveting. Brad’s reaction is common. It has long been established that a professional challenge, provided it is not <em>excessively</em> challenging, makes work more engaging and appealing.</p> <p>By changing the context, skills-based volunteering can often stretch goals and inject excitement into everyday job responsibilities. The staff of Mapleleaf Marketing, a small West Virginia firm, found designing a healthy heart campaign required more creativity than their commercial work. Similarly, the experiences PwC employees have teaching middle school students basic financial concepts is full of surprises they don’t encounter at work.</p> <p>In summary, skills-based volunteering is not about asking employees to do their job without pay. Skills-based volunteering is about offering employees the opportunity to take their jobs to new places.</p> <p><strong>Additional Tools and Resources (for OneOC Business Members):</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="http://companies.oneoc.org/knowledge-center/tool-six-options-for-skills-based-volunteering/" target="_blank">Download “Six options for skills-based volunteering”</a></li> <li>Do you have a question about corporate community engagement? <a href="/ask-the-expert" title="Ask the Expert" data-id="4163">Ask the Experts!</a></li> </ul>

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John asked:

Can a small team doing community engagement make a meaningful difference?

Bea answered:

Make a mental list of the top accomplishments your work team accomplished last year, whether you manage a group of two or two thousand. Maybe they met all scorecard goals, increased sales by 20% and significantly developed their leadership skills, for example.</p> <p>Now imagine that this list of accomplishments also included tutoring Flor, an impoverished fifth grader from Guatemala, twice a week and witnessing her transformation from a failing student who sat alone during recess to a cheerful child who became a “B” student. Or, if you prefer, imagine your team picked up plastic and cans, restoring a stream to its pristine state. Aren’t these accomplishments as meaningful as anything on your original list? Wouldn’t your team recognize them as such?</p> <p>Between work, parenting, other responsibilities and meeting sleep needs, three in four Americans don’t find time to volunteer. Most of us miss out on being part of a meaningful societal accomplishment. Meanwhile, Flor languishes in the school system that can’t give her the one-on-one assistance that would help her succeed and our streams run contaminated.</p> <p>As a business manager, however, you can give your team the opportunity to add to their list of accomplishments. Whatever they’ve done at work that makes them most proud, adding an accomplishment in the social realm will increase their pride. That’s the contribution of corporate community engagement. Even if they help a single child in some small way, they intuitively know and naturally consider this a meaningful accomplishment.</p> <p>Because it’s what business managers are attuned to, I introduced corporate community engagement in last month’s blog [link to blog] by focusing on its impressive business benefits. Had I started with “Our schools are in trouble” or “Help us pick up trash!” you, or at least the business representative in you, would have stopped reading, and rightly so. Your professional charge is to further the interests of the business, not to get distracted by the world’s problems.</p> <p>Business benefits not withstanding, however, the first and truest reason to develop a vibrant corporate community engagement program at your company or department is to make the world a little brighter.</p> <p><strong> </strong>Additional Tools and Resources (for OneOC Business Members):</p> <ul> <li>Download “Sample High Impact Corporate Community Engagement Projects”</li> </ul> <p>Do you have a question about corporate community engagement? <a href="/ask-the-expert" title="Ask the Expert" data-id="4163">Ask the Experts!</a></p>

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Cindy asked:

Is “doing well by doing good” for real? Or hoopla?

Bea answered:

I understand the skepticism expressed by the energy company VP who asked the question. Corporate community engagement[1] — be it in the form of grants, employee volunteering, cause marketing partnerships or in-kind donations — serves impoverished families, adorable kids and other feel-good causes. Helping a new low-income mother elicits images of kind old ladies knitting, not of new product market share growing. It’s difficult for us to reconcile the softness corporate community engagement with the rigor of smart business.</p> <p>That’s a mistake, however. It’s precisely community engagement’s direct line to human empathy that makes it a uniquely powerful business strategy. It turns out humans are evolutionarily hardwired to respond positively to individuals and organizations who contribute to the wellbeing of others. If your business is perceived as doing societal good, it’s more likely employees will hard, customers will tell others about your products and neighbors will welcome your presence. In his best selling book <em>Give and Take</em>, Wharton professor Adam Grant makes an overwhelming evidence-based case that companies and people who support a cause beyond their self-interest perform better financially. Not every study finds that community engagement leads to greater financial return, but the vast majority do. It appears to be a matter of doing the corporate-community engagement well. What’s more, the more the link between business’ community engagement and performance is studied, the stronger the link appears to be. For example:</p> <ul> <li>Harvard Business School research found that companies with more corporate community engagement significantly outperform their counterparts over the long-term, both in terms of stock market and accounting performance.[2]</li> <li>Market research has uncovered that 56 percent of Americans will travel an extra 10 minutes out of their way to purchase a product that supports a cause they care about and that 71 percent are willing to pay at least $2.28 more for such a $10 product.[3]</li> <li>Corporate Executive Board Company research involving millions of employees across several industries found that every employee who participates in corporate community engagement activities adds $2,400 of value to the company via increased employee engagement.[4]</li> <li>An academic study found that corporate community engagement programs often boost employee engagement and customer-service levels.[5]</li> <li>A Deloitte survey revealed that millennials are twice as likely to be very satisfied with the progression of their career when they have the opportunity to volunteer through their employer.[6]</li> <li>The same Deloitte survey revealed that millennials are 24% more likely to recommend their company with strong corporate community engagement to a friend.[7]</li> </ul> <p>Indeed, corporate community engagement is such an effective business strategy that there is now evidence that “doing poorly by not doing good” is also true. An analysis of one of product line conducted by Johnson &amp; Johnson concluded that the company risked losing $100 million in revenue to competitors were it to cease itsenvironmental practices.</p> <p>In summary, it appears that English business magnate and founder of Virgin Group, Sir Richard Branson, is right. “Businesses that don’t address social responsibility and more importantly don’t put this at the core of the operations will suffer over the medium to long term.”[8]</p> <h3>Additional Tools and Resources (For Members):</h3> <ul> <li><a href="http://companies.oneoc.org/knowledge-center/" target="_blank"><strong>Download “Summary of the Evidence: The Business Case for Corporate Community Engagement”</strong></a></li> <li><a href="http://companies.oneoc.org/knowledge-center/" target="_blank" title="Tool: Template for Monetizing Community Engagement"><strong>Download Corporate Community Engagement Planning Tool</strong></a></li> <li><strong>Do you have a question about corporate community engagement? <strong><a href="/ask-the-expert" title="Ask the Expert" data-id="4163">Ask the Experts!</a></strong></strong></li> </ul> <p>[1] Also known as corporate social responsibility, social responsibility, corporate giving, corporate philanthropy, corporate community involvement, shared value and sustainable business.<br />[2] Eccles, Robert G., Ioannis Ioannou and George Serafeim. “The Impact of a Corporate Culture of Sustainability on Corporate Behavior and Performance.” Harvard Business School Working Paper, 2011.<br />[3] Do Well Do Good. <em>The Do Well Do Good Second Annual Public Opinion Survey Report on Cause Marketing, </em>2012.<br />[4] Knopp, Brian. “Maximizing the Effectiveness of Corporate Volunteer Programs” (webinar). CEB. July, 2014.<br />[5] Daniel Korschun, C.B. Bhattacharya, and Scott D. Swain. “Corporate Social Responsibility, Customer Orientation, and the Job Performance of Frontline Employees Journal of Marketing.” May, 2014.<br />[6] Deloitte, <em>Deloitte Volunteer IMPACT Survey</em>, 2011.<br />[7] Deloitte, <em>Deloitte Volunteer IMPACT Survey</em>, 2011.<br />[8] https://www.b1g1.com/buy1give1/B1G1-RichardBranson-EntrepreneurCountry</p>

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