If you’ve been to summer camp or even a business seminar before, you’re probably familiar with the trust fall exercise. It requires participants to close their eyes and take a backwards plunge into the open arms of people they’ve chosen to trust. Despite the awkward social element, it’s often a popular and effective leadership training exercise. This is because it teaches the concept that you must rely on your team to do good work and support each other in times of need.
The same principle applies to social impact, the positive change that companies make in their communities and around the globe to address societal challenges. It’s become a major priority for many consumers, with research showing that 87% of people say they will purchase a product from a company that supports a cause or issue they believe in.
Companies have a unique opportunity to make a difference by integrating social impact into their operations and core values. They can focus on issues such as climate change, racial inequity, hunger and homelessness, and poverty while differentiating themselves from competitors and building a loyal customer base.
The first step in incorporating social impact into your business is choosing the type of change you want to make. Once you’ve narrowed down your options, create short- and long-term goals to make your vision a reality. This will help your employees stay engaged, and give them something to strive for.
Another important aspect of incorporating social impact into your business is measuring its effectiveness. You can do this by interviewing employees and volunteers who were involved in your project to collect anecdotes, which can be used as proof that your business is making a real impact. You can also use quantitative data, such as metrics on how much you’ve raised or how many trees have been planted in a specific community.
Lastly, it’s essential that you set clear expectations for your employees about the importance of this work. You can do this by clearly defining the role of social impact in your company and setting out the types of activities you hope to see from your employees. You can then hold regular meetings to discuss progress and celebrate success.
Whether you’re an employee or a business owner, it’s your responsibility to be part of the solution to societal problems like poverty and inequality. By making social impact a core value in your organization, you can inspire others to join the movement and work toward a better future for all. After all, we’re stronger together.