Archive for the ‘Conferences’ Category

Crowdfunding and Subscription Billing in Community Involvement – this needs to be on your radar screen!

September 25, 2012
Have you heard about crowdfunding yet? It’s all the latest hype in the Community Involvement field, and a trend that will not go away – the Tsunami wave is only just starting.
Crowdfunding is new – the word did not exist before 2006. It first started in the US with websites like kickstarter.com and indiegogo.comNow everybody can do fundraising from the public, in the fields of music, art, film, design, sports, or social projects – if only their pledge is convincing. And you’d be surprised what kinds of projects receive successful funding – be it in the thousands or even millions! The principle is simple: If many people each give a little, a lot can be financed! A film company that looked to raise Euro 1 million within three months to supplement a movie budget had raised that amount already after – one week! A pledge to raise USD 5,000 for a victim of mobbing generated USD 650,000 across the US within only six days!
Leading companies have now discovered crowdfunding as a means to enhance stakeholder relationships and stay in touch with communities – crowdfunding is about a metamorphosis of the ‘Like’ button in Social Media into a monetary contribution. Leading companies now take their Community Involvement projects public and give stakeholders a chance to participate as co-funders. Contributors join a funder community and usually receive a thank-you gift for their donation, starting with books and DVDs and not ending with personal meetings with celebrities or international leaders of change – depending on the size of the contribution.
The most advanced has been Unilever: The company started its ‘Waterworks’ subscription billing campaign via Facebook app in June 2012 – and got nice media attention for it. Have a look.
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This is about more than a one-time donation – subscribers get billed for 10 cents a day. In return, they receive regular updates about the project’s success, and video news from water workers in different countries. Contributors find they share personal values with Unilever, and together they can bring clean drinking water to 500 million people up until 2020. 1 billion people use Facebook. If 100,000 globally participate in the ‘Waterworks’ initiative, donating 10 cents per day, that will gross USD 3.6 million in one year – and a lot of clean water can be generated from that amount …
My client Skype just started a crowdfunding initiative to further support their charity partner Peace One Day, the organization behind International Peace Day, endorsed by the United Nations and taking place every year on September 21. Peace One Day works on peace education around the world, and thanks to the partnership with Skype, peace education is now brought to many schools around the world via virtual classrooms, in 15 languages. Through the crowdfunding initiative www.SkypeforPeace.org, Skype invites the public to co-fund the initiative – and Skype will match every dollar contributed.
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Crowdfunding generates new attention and gives a fresh boost to the social brand dimension. Of course, good marketing and communications around such an initiative are important! However, with the tsunami only beginning, first movers really have a chance to differentiate themselves and get noticed.
If you’d like to find out more about crowdfunding, get in touch – and if you happen to be in Berlin on October 26, you may want to attend our session on crowdfunding at the Kulturinvest Congress.
If you want to get started, I’ll also be happy to connect you to the people who developed Skype’s microsite.
Best of luck to you in exploring this new area of community engagement!
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Crowdfunding – was ist es, was ist erfolgreich, hat es Zukunft? Kongress in Berlin 25. Oktober

August 8, 2012

Weltweit werden immer mehr Projekte über Crowdfunding finanziert. Was genau ist es?

Die Begriffe ‚Crowdfunding’ oder auch ‚Crowdsourcing’ sind im Sprachgebrauch seit etwa 2006. Es handelt sich hier, kurz gesagt, um ‚Mittelbeschaffung aus der Menge’.

Im Zeitalter des Internets und der sozialen Medien sind wir alle miteinander vernetzt, und wir alle können innerhalb von Sekunden Meinungen beitragen. Genauso ist es jedoch mit Geld: Wir alle können auch innerhalb von Sekunden, über Kreditkartenzahlungen, Bankeinzug online oder PayPal Gelder beitragen. Wenn jeder Einzelne nur eine kleine Summe gibt, aber viele mitmachen, kommt so in kurzer Zeit sehr viel zusammen. Man denke nur zurück an Karlheinz Böhm und seinen ‚Menschen für Menschen’-Aufruf damals über ‚Wetten dass’. Im Grunde war das damals das erste Crowdfunding-Projekt in Deutschland. Hätte Herr Böhm seinen Aufruf im heutigen Zeitalter der sozialen Medien gemacht, wäre womöglich spontan noch mehr Geld zusammen gekommen.

Beim Crowdfunding geht es also darum, dass viele gemeinsam durch einen kleinen Beitrag von jedem viel bewegen. Gemeinsam formen sie spontan eine ‚Community’, und Projekte erhalten zweckgebunden Kapital. Ein deutsches Wort für Crowdfunding ist – hört sich allerdings weniger attraktiv an – ‚Schwarmfinanzierung’. Der Projektschwerpunkt liegt meist auf künstlerischen und kreativen Projekten. So sind Kategorien wie Design, Kunst, Mode, Musik, Film, Video, Foto, Events, Ausstellungen, Theater sowie Sport häufig vertreten. Das Prinzip eignet sich jedoch genauso gut für soziale Spendenzwecke.

Welches Projekt erfährt zur Zeit die grösste Aufmerksamkeit?

Pepsi Refresh ist sicherlich in aller Munde. Hier stellt das Unternehmen Pepsi die Gelder, und Besucher der Website schlagen Projekte vor und geben ihre Stimmen ab für die Projekte, die Förderung durch Pepsi erhalten sollen. Pepsi Refresh ist jedoch in diesem Sinne kein Crowdfunding, sondern ein Crowdsourcing.

Die erste Crowdfunding-Plattform wurde 2009 in den USA mit Kickstarter.com eingerichtet. Bereits über 10.000 Projekte sind hierüber finanziert worden. Die Initiatoren versuchen meist mit einem Video von sich oder dem Projekt zu überzeugen. Nach dem gleichen Vorbild sind mit indiegogo.com und rockethub.com weitere Crowdfunding-Plattformen online gegangen. Mit pozible.com oder sonicangel.com sind die ersten Länder außerhalb von Amerika mit dem Thema Crowdfunding im Bereich Projektfinanzierung online gegangen. In Deutschland sind seit 2010 die Plattformen Startnext.de, Inkubato.com, mySherpas.com und pling.de vertreten.

Besonders interessant ist das Projekt ‚Diaspora’. Für die Entwicklung einer Internetplattform suchten vier Studenten 10.000 US-Dollar. Mit der Plattform wurde Facebook der Kampf angesagt und angekündigt, ein Pendant zu entwickeln, welches bessere Vorkehrungen im Bereich Datenschutz treffen wird und die Daten seiner Nutzer dezentral immer auf dem eigenen Rechner des Anwenders speichert. Dies fand enormen Zuspruch in der Bevölkerung, die das Projekt gemeinsam mit mehr als 200.000 US-Dollar überfinanziert hat. Unter den menr als 6.000 Spendern befand sich auch Facebook-Gründer Mark Zuckerberg. Im Interview mit dem Magazin Wired sagte Zuckerberg: “I donated. I think it is a cool idea.”

In Deutschland war 2011 das Startjahr für’s Crowdfunding, und das bis dato größte Projekt in Deutschland startete das Kölner Unternehmen Brainpool im Dezember 2011. Für den geplanten Film zur TV-Serie Stromberg wollte das Unternehmen bis März 2012 eine Million Euro einsammeln. Innerhalb von nur einer Woche war jedoch bereits die eine Million Euro erreicht!

Ist Crowdfunding nur ein momentaner Hype oder wird es eine zukunftsfähige Finanzierungsform?

Da das Engagement von Stakeholdern, das Kreieren, Pflegen und Erhalten von (Kunden-)beziehungen über soziale Netzwerke und generell ‚Open Sourcing’ sowohl von Geldern als auch von Ideen seit Jahren als Trend wachsen, ist davon auszugehen, dass es sich hier absolut nicht um einen momentanen Hype handelt, sondern um zukunftsfähige, gemeinschaftliche Umgangsformen. Dieser Trend folgt der allgemein stärkeren Demokratisierung der Welt durch das Internet und die sozialen Medien. Speziell das Crowdfunding wird an Bedeutung wachsen, da hier auch kleinere, unbekanntere Projekte, wenn sie nur als ausreichend interessant herausragen können, durchaus auf ansehnliche Finanzierungssummen kommen können, ohne auf die öffentliche Hand oder Großsponsoren angewiesen zu sein. Junge Bands z.B. nutzen die Methode erfolgreich, um Geld für die Aufnahme eines ersten Albums zusammen zu bekommen. Benedikt Fuhrmann bekam erfolgreich 50.000 Euro zusammen, um seine Ausstellung ‘Ein Blick Iran. Ein Land, da leben Menschen‘  inklusive Vorträgen und Musikkonzerten in einer katholischen Kirche in Bayern zu realisieren.

Ein Aufruf zum Crowdsourcing oder Crowdfunding ist auch gut für die jeweilige ‚Marke’, gibt ihr entweder erste Bekannheit oder aber neue, frische Energie! Man kann durch das Crowdsourcing/Crowdfunding auch ‚Communities’ kreieren und mit ihnen in Kontakt bleiben bzw. sie emotional beteiligen, da ja die Beitragenden in der Folge auch erfahren möchten, was mit ihrem Beitrag geschieht und welche Wirkung erzielt wird. Hier kann man über das Internet, geschickt gemacht, regelrecht Unterhaltung/’Entertainment’ zum Projekt bieten (z.B. auf Facebook) – oder aber in einem ‚geschützten Bereich’ ausschliesslich Spendern Zugang zu besonderen Informationen geben. Man kann Beitragende auch noch weiter involvieren, im Sinne der ‚open source innovation’, und sie nach ihren Ideen fragen, oder sie durch kostenlose Downloads oder Freikarten dankbar ‚belohnen’. Spender können auch im Abspann eines Films genannt oder zu privaten Lesungen oder einer Vernissage eingeladen werden.

Hier gibt es also endlose Möglichkeiten, Kunden und Stakeholder enger an sich zu binden und Beziehungen zu kreieren. Das Ganze zieht gleichzeitig Kreise, da Teilnehmende in der Regel ihre eigenen Aktionen auch Freunden und Bekannten weiterempfehlen, wodurch ein Schneeballeffekt entsteht. Also auch eine Methode, Kultur, Sport und soziales Engagement weiter zu verbreiten!

Wenn Sie mehr erfahren möchten, kommen Sie zu unserer Session zum Crowdfunding beim Kulturinvest-Kongress am 25. und 26. Oktober in Berlin

Now available: My conference essay on The Future of Strategic Employee Volunteering

November 20, 2011

On November 28, a conference took place in Vienna, Austria on the future of strategic Employee Volunteering. This conference was part of a European Union series, on the occasion of 2011 being the European Union Year of Volunteering.

The ‘usual suspects’ were there – representatives of IBM and TNT, Bea Boccalandro, Chris Jarvis and – myself. You can have a look at the program (in German) here: http://icep.at/pdf/corporAID_GCV_28112011.pdf
The conference then traveled on to Madrid and Budapest, and in 2012 it will still take place in Prague and Bratislava.

On the occasion of this series of conferences, a Global Corporate Volunteering Good Practice Case Book will be introduced to which I have contributed. It consists of 10 case studies from multinational companies, including IBM, GlaxoSmithKline and Volkswagen, as well as essays from international experts like Bea Boccalandro and Chris Jarvis. After having presented at the Vienna conference, I am now posting my own essay here: Understanding Permeable Boundaries_The Future of Strategic Employee Involvement_V Scheubel 2011. I argue for no longer creating a split between Employee Volunteering and Corporate Community Involvement, a split between sectors, and a split between company and society. I argue for competency-based secondments of employees towards innovative Corporate Community Involvement partnerships.

An abbreviated version (shorter case examples) will be published in the case book in April 2012. The casebook will be published in English, German and Spanish and will be available in digital format via its own website. You can already pre-order a free copy of this Global Corporate Volunteering Good Practice Case BookCasebook_Bestellkarte


Spoke on Sustainability at IABC event in Frankfurt in August

September 11, 2011

On 29 August, the International Association of Business Communicators invited me to speak at their luncheon event in Frankfurt about the topic of Sustainability and how it is relevant to business communicators.

My main points were about how the topic of sustainable organizations (not just companies) becomes more and more important to stakeholders, and how communicators, as the first to engage with stakeholders, need to go beyond the classic ‘communication push’ towards engaging in real, dialogic relationships with stakeholders. I expanded on the benefits of using social media – for getting known in the community, receiving lots of useful information, and creating valuable connections with stakeholders.

Also got a chance to recommend a few fellow CSR tweeters!

Watch a short post-event video interview here: http://www.vimeo.com/28377548/

On CSR: In Debate in Dubai in July

June 20, 2011

On July 6 in Dubai at the Capital Club, I was in debate with Mishal Kanoo, Deputy Chairman of Kanoo Group, on the seemingly age-old question whether companies should be responsible just to their shareholders or also to their multiple stakeholders – and how so …:

The debate was broadcast live on the web – here’s the link: http://bit.ly/k6fxDm

City 7TV showed a summary of the debate, with interviews – watch it on You Tube, min. 4:15 – 7:57: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1nNW1RxI9Io

I was also interviewed live on the topic of CSR on Dubai Eye business radio that same morning – listen to the podcast: http://uk.zawya.com/radio/default.cfm/sidDE110706064730269761

Sektorenübergreifende Partnerschaftspraxis: Dreitägiges Zertifikatstraining, 27.-29. September 2011, Köln

March 30, 2011

Hier das Training, auf das Sie in Deutschland schon lange gewartet haben, und zum ersten Mal auf Deutsch: Sektorenübergreifende Partnerschafts-Praxis. Ein dreitägiges Training mit der Option, im Anschluss ein Zertifikat zu erwerben. Das Training findet Ende September in Köln in einem der schönsten Seminarzentren Deutschlands statt.

Erweitern Sie Ihre Kenntnisse und Fähigkeiten, um sektorenübergreifende Partnerschaften effektiv umsetzen, moderieren und begleiten zu können!

Effektive Kooperationen zwischen Beteiligten mit unterschiedlichen Missionen, Zielsetzungen, Kulturen und sogar unterschiedlichem Sprachgebrauch sind nicht immer ganz einfach zu realisieren. Es werden ein gemeinschaftliches  Verständnis zwischen Partnern, ein gemeinsam getragener Führungsansatz, ein kooperatives Verständnis von Zusammenarbeit, ein „Werkzeugkasten“ an Schlüsselkompetenzen und gleichzeitig ein starkes Beziehungsmanagement sowie strukturiertes Projektmanagement benötigt. Partnerschaften, die auf der Basis dieser gemeinsam geschaffenen Erfolgsfaktoren entstehen, können echte Wirkung erzielen. Umgekehrt werden Partnerschaften ohne diese Erfolgsfaktoren weit hinter ihren Potentialen und Möglichkeiten zurückbleiben oder sogar scheitern.

Trainingsablauf

Tag 1

Was bedeutet sektorenübergreifende Partnerschaft? – Warum sektorenübergreifende Partnerschaften? – Vorteile und Risiken von Partnerschaften – Andere Sektoren verstehen – Der Partnerschafts-Zyklus – Der Business Case für Partnerschaften

Tag 2

Efektive sektorenübergreifende Partnerschaften entwickeln – Interessenbasierte Verhandlungsführung – Partnerschaften managen und konstruktiv aufrecht erhalten

Tag 3

Typische Herausforderungen in sektorenübergreifenden Partnerschaften – Organisations-interne Hindernisse verstehen – Partnerschaften bewerten und kontinuierlich verbessern – Konkrete Planung nächster Schritte

Kursbroschüre downloaden:
http://www.thepartneringinitiative.org/docs/Germanyflyerfinal.pdf

Kursbroschüren (Druckversion) bestellen:
veronica@scheubeldevelopment.com

Online anmelden:
https://www.eiseverywhere.com/ereg/index.php?eventid=22176&


The Partnering Initiative
ist ein Programm des International Business Leaders Forum in London. Mit 20 Jahren Erfahrung in der Theorie und Praxis von sektorenübergreifenden Partnerschaften begleitet The Partnering Initiative effektive Zusammenarbeit zwischen Unternehmen, Regierungen und Entwicklungsorganisationen/Zivilgesellschaft: durch direkte Unterstützung, Trainings und die Entwicklung von Standards. The Partnering Initiative hat eine Reihe von Fachbüchern und Broschüren zum Thema herausgegeben.

Veronica Scheubel repräsentiert The Partnering Initiative in Deutschland.

Engaging the whole organization around sustainability: It needs bringing CR and Change practitioners together!

October 17, 2010

About time for another blogpost – this one will be about CSR/Sustainability and change, and how practitioners from both sides need to work together. The urgency to write about this arose from attending the sustainability-focused Ashridge conference ‘Leading Organisations of Tomorrow’ (http://tinyurl.com/2948fqy) last week.

Attending the conference and engaging in many conversations with fellow practitioners made me realize what my own advocacy is really about: engaging the whole organization around sustainability. I believe that CSR/Sustainability can only work, move out of a marginal position and achieve scale, if it is looked at  – and implemented as – a long-term change initiative for the whole organization.

But here’s the current reality:

While the few exceptional organizations have managed engagement well, CSR/Sustainability managers/directors in the majority of organizations are faced with the task of engaging the whole organization around sustainability – and don’t have a clue how to do that creatively, professionally and effectively. How do they go about it, other than, simply speaking, holding a ppt presentation for the board and pushing information mails on information-overloaded employees? They are also supposed to effectively dialogue and engage with external stakeholder groups – and so many I have met are scared of that, as they simply don’t know how to effectively engage in difficult conversations that might center around conflict.

Change/OD consultants, whether in-house or external, could be really helpful in all of these contexts, and many of them care personally about the topic of sustainability. However, there still seems to be deep fragmentation between these circles – a fragmentation that urgently needs to be bridged, in my opinion.

Interestingly, one company that really stood out with a different approach here already in the middle of the Noughties was O2 in Germany: They had the change consultants right there as members of their CR Steering Group. Great!

Change/OD consultants already work inside organizations on issues around culture and values, inclusive strategy development, and various change initiatives. They tend to be excellent and sensitive facilitators, also capable of providing a safe environment for difficult stakeholder conversations. Strangely enough, the fewest of them seem to have looked at sustainability as a long-term change initiative for the whole organization. At the conference last week, I noticed that many of them, in their own understanding of sustainability, seem to be in the ‘late majority’ segment for that topic …

At the conference, a company-internal OD consultant said: “I really want to get involved with the sustainability topic. I think I want to put it on the agenda of a workshop with top leaders in the company I’ll be running soon.”

I asked: “What about the CSR/Sustainability people in your company? Do you know each other? Have you ever talked with them?” Her answer was that a) she did not know them/had never met them and b) she did not want to involve them in designing that topic for her workshop. I was left puzzled …

On the other hand, I would assume that most CSR/Sustainability managers don’t know what good change/OD consultants can help them with: Effective engagement of both the board and of employees internally, and of other stakeholder groups externally, through e.g. interviews and facilitated online ‘jams’, workshops and focus groups, thinking and inquiring together, Future Search or Appreciative Inquiry initiatives, inclusive strategy and innovation work, and so on. The CSR/Sustainability people could get into highly effective engagement initiatives together with in-house or external people who really know their way around such engagement, and who bring the required training, experience, pedagogy, methodologies and ‘tools’.

Effectively engaging the board, middle management and employees in general creates buy-in from everybody in the organisation, creates opportunities for sustainability becoming part of organizational culture and values, for employees taking ownership for sustainability in their respective functions, and for employees contributing lots of innovation potential around sustainability. Effectively engaging external stakeholders creates improved understanding, might resolve conflicts, and can also contribute a lot of innovation potential.

CSR/Sustainability managers, when shown what change/OD consultants can do in working together with them, tend to lean back, visibly relax, and breathe a huge sigh of relief, saying “why did you not tell me earlier? where have you been all this time? when can we start working together?”

On the other hand, change/OD consultants who also care about sustainability (be it ecological sustainability, sustainable employee relations or sustainable leadership) can find here a really meaningful and fulfilling field of own engagement.

What’s missing, I find, are large-scale opportunities – e.g. workshops, conferences – to bring the two circles together: for getting to know each other, for generating improved mutual understanding, and for mutual exploration of opportunities.

Why am I passionate about this topic? As said at the beginning, if we want to achieve much-needed scale and effective implementation of organization sustainability, in my understanding it is the only way forward. Ongoing fragmentation will not get us there.

When I brought this up at the conference, the lead facilitator asked back: “Would you be willing to take this project on?” Well yes, I would. I’ve decided to really look into this and try to make it happen for next year. Collaborators most welcome!

 

NGOs and Corporations: Collaboration and Conflict

September 23, 2010

At the International CSR Conference in Berlin on September 23, this topic is getting the attention of a major plenary session. A few months ago, there was a major cross-sector panel on the same issue, featuring key environmental NGOs and, amongst other corporate representatives, a major energy company. This panel, coincidentally, also took place in Berlin, and a key question there was, just as well as at the conference here now: Can you collaborate and criticize at the same time?

Corporate representatives often assume that NGOs should be thrilled about the opportunity to partner with them. I must admit that, coming from the corporate side, I also held that attitude for a long time. I am still passionate about cross-sector partnerships and their opportunities.

NGOs, however, are often concerned with a mix-up of their roles. As civil society representatives, aren’t they supposed to be independent, critical of and, if necessary, protest corporate activities? They are concerned whether they are giving up power, will be influenced or interfered with too much, compromise their own stakeholder base – becoming “corporatist” and “losing their power and their teeth”, as Michael Yaziji of IMD’s Forum for Corporate Sustainability Management calls it during the plenary session at the conference.

Cross-sector collaboration is certainly an interaction of ideologies, value sets, visions, missions and expectations that can become quite complex and controversial – and I am noticing that for corporations, it is certainly necessary to be sensitive of this and pay good attention to NGOs’ concerns. An important questions to be asked is: Taking complexity and concerns into consideration, what can be done to build a relationship of mutuality/reciprocity and trust? In that context, a question to be asked as well is: What does each side have to give up (e.g. interests, positions, attitudes) to collaborate well?

Peter Eigen, founder of Transparency International, said wisely yesterday: “You need to always keep the dialogue open, while keeping the right distance.” What the ‘right’ distance is probably needs to be negotiated case by case, and re-negotiated periodically and situationally?

Attending Intl. Corporate Citizenship Conference in Boston, April 11-13

April 22, 2010

It’s been 5 years since I last attended the annual International Corporate Citizenship Conference in Boston. Thank you so much to Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship for inviting me! I got to introduce our book ‘Corporate Community Involvement: The Definitive Guide’ and got to co-facilitate a session. Saw familiar faces again (e.g. Billy Brittingham, Colleen Olphert, Chris Pinney, Angela Kang), met those who I had previously only heard on the phone (e.g. Eileen Blinstrub, Emily Weiner) and made wonderful new contacts (e.g. Phil Clawson, Greg Mangum). Also great fun to meet F2F with fellow Tweeters Chris Jarvis and Ashley Jablow. And I was grateful for the opportunity to thank Brad Googins personally for having so kindly and generously endorsed our book!

In terms of sessions, I enjoyed the breadth of content – there was something for those interested in philanthropy just as well as for those interested in social innovation and entrepreneurship. My personal favorite was Nate Garvis with his talk on ‘Naked Civics’ – one memorable quote: “The law now is the public conversation, building a culture, and that becomes the law.”

My special treat was a conversation with Phil Mirvis and his lovely wife Mary Jo Hatch, an organisational psychologist and an organisational theorist respectively. Wonderful new insights on underbounded and overbounded systems from Phil and reading recommendations on organisational identity from Mary Jo – both topics that I’m currently interested in as part of my ongoing learning around organisation consulting …

And then it was hilarious listening to Nadira Hira and her insights on Gen Y – it was great that she was so straightforwardly outspoken! And I found that a lot of the things Gen Yers expect and take for granted relationally is what I promote in my consulting as the new path for organisations to take. Hopefully, with Gen Y growing up, the whole approach will go inevitably mainstream: with a relaxed work culture, a relational approach, bottom-up participatory input, etc. Useful quote from her, equally regarding customers, stakeholders, employees: “Retention is impacted by building bonds.”

Finally, did I mention that the food was *incredible*?

For more, see the conference recap page here: http://www.bcccc.net/index.cfm?pageId=2142

For those who could not buy our book at the bookseller’s table at the conference, given it was sold out so quickly, go to http://www.cciguide.com to buy with one click.

Co-facilitating session at Boston College conference in April

February 11, 2010

Will be co-facilitating a breakout session at Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship’s annual conference 11-13 April in Boston (http://www.bcccc.net/index.cfm?pageId=2142), together with Billy Brittingham, BCCCC Assistant Director, Executive Education.

Topic of the session:
Corporate Community Involvement: At a Value Crossroads?
Despite great progress over the past 20 years, many Community Involvement departments continue to tell the Boston College Center they suffer from a credibility gap. While its value is clear to those who manage Community Involvement, it is not well known or understood by the rest of the organization. In contrast, we are seeing the value of green initiatives being enthusiastically embraced and understood by the entire company. What’s going on here? And what can we do about it? Recent Center research spearheaded by the Community Involvement Leadership Roundtable points to three things that may help: 1) focus Community Involvement strategy and put value at the heart of program design; 2) demonstrate the value of your work through effective evaluation and measurement; and 3) communicate more effectively about Community Involvement, both inside and outside the company. In this interactive session we’ll consider the challenges Community Involvement practitioners face and discuss potential implications and solutions.