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Small businesses have long been the backbone of their towns and cities. It’s small businesses that support local charities, food drives for the hungry, little league teams, school fundraisers, and so much more. It’s small businesses that pay more than their fair share in local taxes, and when you buy from a local business, a far higher percent of your sales dollars stays local and helps support local fire and police departments, schools, build roads. It’s big corporations — not small companies — that demand tax concessions and subsidies from local cities, and then leave town when they can find cheaper labor elsewhere.
But, increasingly, customers and employees — especially Millennials — expect companies to think about what is called "the triple bottom line":
In other words, making a profit is only one outcome to focus on. You also need to consider how your business contributes to people (the well-being of your employees, community, workers/vendors) and the planet (environment, climate change, waste, animals, etc). Here's how:
1. Donate time. A good way to build team morale as well as contributing to your community is to have your employees volunteer — on paid company time — for a good cause.
2. Donate products or services. Your products and services are designed to help your customers, so they can help others as well.
3. Donate money. Make it clear that a certain percent of your pre- or post-profit sales will go to a specific organization. For example, the non-profit environmental organization 1% for the Planet, founded by Patagonia founder Yves Chouinard, enables companies to easily donate money for environmental causes.
Read the full article about how to implement corporate social responsibility by Rhonda Abrams at USA TODAY.