The Annual Charities@Work Employee Engagement Summit took place in New York City last month from June 27 to 28. As a founding partner, we are proud to be a part of this opportunity for corporate professionals working at the intersection of business and nonprofit relations to work together to enhance how businesses and their employees can create a greater social impact. This year’s focus included integrating business goals and values, demonstrating impact, innovative approaches to employee engagement and more.

Here are some highlights in case you missed it:

Companies are expected to take a stand for social issues. To know where to enact change, take time to listen to the community. For example, Coca-Cola leadership attended a town hall meeting to discuss social issues. (Coca-Cola)

Purpose-inspired communications and storytelling are great ways to engage employees. Storytelling can be challenging, as it must be authentic, engaging, impactful and thought-provoking to both internal and external audiences, but it has the potential to make a huge impact. (The Campbell Soup Company)

Be focused, be flexible and leave no one out. Amex has committed to eliminated single-use plastic straws and stir sticks at all major office locations globally. Their advice is: “Be focused, be flexible” when aligning employee engagement with corporate purpose and leave no one out when implementing your CSR programs. KPMG suggests: Consider embedding citizenship work into employee training and on-boarding, and aligning engagement with skills development. (American Express, KPMG)

Let your employees take initiative. Task a small group of employees with your company’s CSR initiatives. This group will create and maintain collaborative effort in the short-term by sharing knowledge, gathering resources, tracking outcomes, holding stakeholders accountable and more until the goals are achieved. (Johnson & Johnson)

Skills-based volunteering is an effective employee engagement and talent development tool. Volunteerism provides companies the opportunity to develop employee skills and acquire talent by serving communities where they do business. Consider building an advisory board for your program and include your HR department, various levels of management, community relations and resource groups to help gain investment for a pro-bono project. (John Hancock, JPMorgan Chase, Marriott, Wells Fargo)

We hope these takeaways help you when considering your own initiatives. Contact us for more ideas or for help implementing some of these strategies.

Photo courtesy of Charities@Work.

This article first appeared in Global Impact’s July 2018 Charity and Campaign newsletters.