Posts Tagged ‘common good’

Tapping into your brand’s bigger story

Five years ago this month I left the business I co-founded in 1993 — and started over. Some moments I think it was a reckless decision, leaving behind the security of a prospering business for an uncertain pursuit. Most of the time, it feels like the right decision, heeding a desire to reconnect to purpose and passion in my work.

Source Flickr: By koalazymonkey

This is the backdrop of R.Bruer Company, my bigger story, if you will. Yes, I provide branding, messaging and storytelling for businesses and nonprofits. Those are my services. My bigger story taps into what I believe matters most in our work as individuals and organizations: helping others add meaning to their lives while engaging them in a larger purpose.

Each of our organizations has a smaller story to tell. Unfortunately, it’s often the only one we share. (more…)


Doing good doesn’t drive business giving in US

Private companies in the US tend to be more generous than companies in other countries in giving to charity, according to an international survey discussed in the June issue of Inc. magazine. Companies in all surveyed countries are primarily motivated by promotion of employee recruitment and retention; however, private US firms are much less likely than their international counterparts to be motivated by “saving the planet.”

The survey’s supervisor believes employees are commonly the ones pushing their employers to donate to charities and support community service. So employers, seeing this desire among their workers, figure giving is a good way to keep and attract employees. The survey spokesman was surprised that “saving the planet” did not rank higher as a motivation in the US.

I’m not surprised by the finding, but I hope the next survey reveals some changes. The drive to give must come more from the top than the rank and file. Only then will we see the giving continue and expand. And along with that, US business owners and senior managers must accept the challenge and need to do the right thing for our planet. Not that employee retention and recruitment isn’t important. It is. But giving out of concern for the planet signals to all of your stakeholders that you recognize your organization has social and environmental responsibilities. The reward is inherent in the action of taking responsibility, not in the profits, or even the retaining of employees.

I don’t have other studies at my fingertips to prove this, but I believe companies whose owners and leaders operate from a place of commitment to the common good will also enjoy the greatest employee loyalty and generate more interest among desirable employee prospects. These social and environmental values need to start at the top and be embedded in all aspects of a company’s behavior and practices. Giving to charity or community groups flows naturally from the values of a triple-bottom-line company: people, planet, profits. 

That businesses give back to their communities, even for selfish reasons, is a good thing. But when the majority of business employers are motivated solely or primarily by their employees to do good, we have a serious misplacement of values at the top. We need business leaders to embrace their responsibility to the common good and become committed and active citizens of their communities and the world at large. Until many more do, there will be no solving the daunting social and ecological challenges in front of us.