Principle Seven: Be a Responsible and Active Corporate is the last of the seven business principles described in this collection. It involves the notion that every company is part of a larger eco-system and has a responsibility to share in the overall success of the large community. In return, although not to be expected, the mere act of participating in these types of activities will significantly help the company develop a culture that will encourage teamwork and trust, two key ingredients required for success.
The titles and abstracts of the articles in this section are listed below.
Overview Chapter Eight: Principle Seven
The articles in this chapter discuss issues that relate to the importance of the company becoming an active member of the community by encouraging all employees, independent of level or responsibility, to become involved in an outside-the-office activity to help others.
Introduction to Principle Seven
Taking part and supporting individuals and organizations within the community is a key element in building a company’s culture. It involves reaching out to those who are not directly involved with the company by investing time and talents. There is always enough time to participate in these activities. Unfortunately, with the never-ending focus on internal tactical activities, it is easy not to take the time. Once participation begins, the lasting positive effects, both internally and externally, make the investment well worth the effort.
Start but Don't Lead
Being successful as a responsible and active corporate citizen can only occur if others lead the charge. Let others in the organization take control, define the program, and oversee its success. The goal is to help the community through the concerted efforts of the company’s employees. This will help make “caring” a fundamental building block of the company’s culture while making a meaningful difference to the community.
What Can You Do?
There is almost a limitless number of activities that a company can pursue in their desire to become a responsible and active member of the community. The challenge is selecting one of the activities that will also provide lasting benefit to the company, and more importantly, the employees who choose to participate. Using some established objective criteria to help with the selections is a useful way of narrowing the field.
Payback for Paying It Forward
Encouraging all employees to participate in community pay it forward activities can obviously help the targeted organizations. Although these activities are based on giving one’s time and talents and expecting nothing in return, significant returns are realized. Those returns take the form of the development of stronger bonds within the company that will continually pay dividends long after the community activities are completed.
Individual Efforts Count Too
Although company-wide pay it forward activities that involve individuals from all levels and functional areas helps the company develop a caring culture, individual activities are an important part of meeting this principle as well. Recognizing their individual contributions is well worth the effort and easy to do.