Where good business makes good sense
The Chamber’s #EMComingTogether campaign raises awareness about the opportunities available for businesses to engage with their communities in a strategic way to foster a holistic relationship between commerce and community. Because when our communities thrive, our business does too.
Community engagement can take on many personas; from Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) to, more recently, Environmental, Social, and Corporate Governance (ESG). We want to go back to basics, where supporting the community you operate in just makes good business sense.
As evidenced by the Government’s plan for post-Covid-19 economic growth, we want to raise awareness of the fact that in order for our region to “build back better”, we need to recognise that successful business and thriving communities go hand-in-hand.
This means that businesses across our region, which are packed with some of the best talent, have a unique opportunity to put their people’s skills to use and target the needs within areas of our communities hardest hit by the pandemic.
More and more we are seeing perceptions around corporate social responsibility change, going from a “nice to have”, and luxury for larger organisations, to a must have for businesses no matter the size.
According to a paper by academics at the University of Derby, and in partnership with the Chamber, the top reason for businesses not engaging with their community is resource – but by being more strategic with your organisation’s impact in the community, you can focus your resource on areas worth hitting.
CSR is also a great way to keep a competitive edge in business – reaping benefits such as staff recruitment and retention, fostering new relationships and tender wins to name a few – while making a strategic impact to the lives of people in your local community.
So as businesses build back resilience to face economic recovery, the opportunity for leaders to have a closer look at the values of their companies should not be overlooked.
Academics at the University of Derby have produced a briefing paper - titled Growing Back Better – East Midlands Businesses’ Approach to Community Engagement - on how members of the Chamber engaged with social and community activities over the past four years. You can read the paper here.