Philanthropy is changing for the better, and I've found it's being driven largely by first generation wealth creators—people who are building businesses built on new ideas. It's no surprise that their approach to giving is based on fresh thinking, and that a lot of innovative ideas spill over into how they support their communities and how they align with charitable causes.

In researching our book on first-generation wealth, my co-author and I had the opportunity to think critically about the many clients we've worked with over the years, advising them on investing, family business, wealth planning and most interestingly—legacy building. I often say that wealth does not equal legacy and the reverse is also true—legacy does not necessarily require wealth. Increasingly, however, companies consider giving of time, money or both, to go hand in hand with a license to operate.

Many of our country's earliest philanthropists left legacies that have more than stood the test of time—the Carnegie family's legacy of public libraries; the Rockefeller legacy of national parks. Can today's companies hope to leave the same kind of lasting legacy, and how?

If you're intent to leave a legacy, consider investing in philanthropic or social causes that are established and building momentum so that you can become a force multiplier. Here’s how to get started:

  • Study what others have done.
  • Explore your passions.
  • Be willing to get your ego out of it.
  • Be strategic and create a mission statement.

Read the full article about philanthropic legacy by Robert Balentine at Forbes.