By: Ann Cramer, director, Americas, IBM Corporate Citizenship and Corporate Affairs
1. Get a basic orientation of your own corporate culture, values, and direction – corporate philanthropy and citizenship today is a lot different than employee engagement (volunteerism) with “tee shirts and balloons,” or even community relations and contributions. Use local corporate donor groups as well as the Council on Foundations and United Philanthropy Forum affiliates to learn with and from colleagues.
2. Read some of the really key/basic works. For example:
- Rosabeth Moss Kanter”s “From Spare Change to Real Change;”
- The work of Michael Porter, Mark Kramer, John Kania on foundation strategy, collective impact, shared value; and
- Monitor’s work on alignment of corporate goals and philanthropy goals.
3. Reach out to the key groups connected with work and thought leadership in this arena:
- Council on Foundations corporate giving page
- Association of Corporate Contributions Professionals (ACCP)
- Committee Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy (CECP)
- Council on Foundations Corporate Philanthropy Practitioner’s Toolkit
- Boston College Corporate Citizenship Center
4. Learn from people in the community: Get involved in regional philanthropy discussions – the corporate council of your regional association of grantmakers, the Philanthropy Roundtable, the Volunteers’ Council of your United Way.
5. Keep learning and growing – in our work, you will create a personal development plan for each year, with opportunities for training and learning. It’s your responsibility to do it, and stay with it. Find mentors within your company and from external colleagues (corporate and other foundations).
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