There is a tendency to think that the only way to have a successful CSR campaign is to organise some sort of fund collection for those who might need it.
While it’s true that fundraising initiatives can prove to be really useful, and are a great short term way of helping, there are other things you can do. In fact the options are limitless.
So how do you plan a successful CSR campaign?
1. Analyse your strengths
If you’re a company with 10 people it’s useless having a casual day in the office where everyone pays a small sum to come in their favorite hoodie. But, if you’re an office of 10 really talented web designers you could offer to support an organisation by providing them with a free website – which in turn could help them attract more people to submit donations online.
You might on the other hand have a wacky team of creatives eager to get their hands dirty – get stuck in and help where it’s needed – help at an animal shelter, organise a countryside clean up, or do some DIY community work.
Remember that you can take a horse to water but you can’t make it drink – so unless you know what your strengths are then you’re not going to get too far.
2. Analyse your motives
What do you seek on getting out of this? Satisfaction, team building, general happiness are all valid things. But what about media attention and PR? There’s no shame in wanting a little bit of attention for the good you’ve done, but don’t forget that the main thing is that you help the community. Any positive media attention is secondary to that. Of course, do get in touch with media companies and do share what you’ve done with the world – it helps raise awareness about the different kinds of way people can take actions, and it also sets an example for other companies to do their bit.
3. Look into your options
There are a hundred and one different ways to help out. However these can probably be split into two main categories: The Environment, The Community. You can choose to go down the environmental route – where you invest time (and money) in the local environment. This can be done through a variety of things like tree planting initiatives, clean ups, animal awareness initiatives, a campaign about the local beaches or even helping with puppy adoption campaigns
When it comes to the community there’s a whole other list of ways to help. Whether it’s a simple children’s reading club or homework help, helping the elderly with their grocery shopping, creating an awareness campaign about health issues, or organising a blood drive.
The important thing is to find something which matches your company’s brand and which can also truly benefit society. It’s useless having a tree planting initiative during a blood shortage.
By selecting the best kind of initiative and pairing it with the needs of your company and the society you’re living in you’re sure to create a ripple effect of change and influence.
CSR initiatives are actually very simple when you think about it, however – if you’ll allow we’d like to be somewhat cliche for a moment. Remember that charity begins at home. The only way you can inspire change within the area you work in is if first you take care of your own. Ensure you have a positive office environment where people help each other out, work as a team, and support each other through the good, the bad, and the ugly. Once you’ve mastered the art of having a team with a beating heart you can then move on to help others and spread the love. It’s cheesy. But it’s true.