What Is Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) + How Can It Benefit Your Career?

Corporate social responsibility, also known as CSR, is a specific business practice that keeps businesses socially accountable for their impact on the economy and the world around them. Companies like Starbucks, LinkedIn, and Deloitte have been holding themselves accountable by implementing excellent labor policies, donating to charity, increasing fair trade, and much more — and it shows in their employee satisfaction rates.

Working for a socially responsible company has become one of the top factors for millennials when choosing what companies to work for. As 76 percent of millennials look for employers based on their corporate social responsibility before signing an offer, giving back to the economy and employees has never been more important.

When you and your employer share similar values, you’ll likely experience personal and financial benefits. Working for a company you believe in can increase your productivity and pride for the time you put into each project. When you align with your company’s mission, you’re more likely to succeed and grow with your company. Plus, when you believe in your team and put your all into your work, you gain the opportunity to earn additional income. Since one third of your life is spent at work, it can be beneficial to your health and well being to be proud of what you contribute to on a daily basis. Keep reading for a more detailed description on how working at a CSR company can benefit you, or jump our infographic below.

6 Reasons to Work for a Socially Responsible Company

When you believe and get to participate in your company’s way of giving back to the community, you also boost your mood. While giving back to your community can show a positive impact on your happiness, it also gives you the opportunity to get to know your coworkers on a deeper level. In 2019, 47 percent of companies encouraged volunteer opportunities, while 24 percent are during working hours. As many companies see the positive impact that corporate social responsibility has on other teams, many want to create their own CSR program. Here’s what we found to be the most rewarding.

1. Gain a Greater Sense of Identity In the Workplace

Undoubtedly, when you connect with your coworkers outside of normal business conversations, you feel like you “fit in.” When you feel like you fit in, you’ll likely feel accomplished and all the hard work you put in will show a positive impact on your organization. Being comfortable with your coworkers opens the door for questions when you feel uncertain about tasks or projects in the works.

Having a sense of identity at your company can help you feel comfortable pitching ideas and asking the right questions, which will help boost your career and keep your mind in learning mode.

Career boost: Building your identity in the workplace encourages your confidence and value in the projects and tasks you work on day after day. You can track and leverage your internal and external business growth and participation to confidently negotiate your next salary boost.

2. Get to Know Your Coworkers

Most businesses allow employees to participate in specific volunteer opportunities or projects during working hours, sometimes even paid, to encourage high turnouts. You get to contribute your time and energy to give back to your community and get to know your team members outside of the office. For example, Salesforce has donated over 3.5 million hours of community service since they originated. During that time, employees have been able to connect with each other outside the workplace without sacrificing more time out of their day.

Building your relationship with your team can increase your cooperative dynamic and allow everyone to bond over a shared passion — your work industry. Instead of meeting up for happy hour and spending extra money on drinks over friendly conversation, socially responsible companies may offer you the opportunity to give back to your community and get paid for it.

Career boost: Getting to know your team outside of the office with a positive attitude is a key trait in leadership. When participating in these events, you’re able to come together and bond with your team over what you’re most passionate about. Creating these strong connections can position you as a leader and help build a positive company culture.

3. Show Up for Your Team, Even When You Don’t “Have” To

Once your company’s volunteer events are put on the calendar, most of the time you feel as if you’re part of a social commitment. When you start to participate in these events, it can boost your attitude and loyalty to your company. You may gain a sense of pride and see your success highly tied to your company and organizational success.

Most of the time, when you feel like they align with your company’s values and missions, you inevitably want to go the extra mile without being asked to. Participating in community activities with your team can potentially help grow your engagement and decrease boredom. You may feel ready to take on any upcoming projects because you know the positive impact it can have on your company and career.

Career boost: With your increased productivity and engagement on most projects, you’re most likely overachieving without realizing it. You’re more likely to show up to meetings and events whether you were asked to or not. Focus on this when negotiating your next leadership career opportunity.

4. Identify Networking Opportunities

Seventy-two percent of millennials say participating in companywide CSR events increases the happiness in their job and life. When participating in these events with your team, you may start to uncover how likeminded everyone on your team is. This is a great way to put yourself out there and grow mentorship opportunities across teams without even having to pay for a coffee.

Utilize your time outside of the office to pick the brain of high level experts in your industry. Establish connections with leaders across departments to build your reference list. If you’re ever struggling with certain tasks, or want some insight on switching departments, you’ll have these connections ready to pull out of your back pocket when needed.

Career boost: Make connections with your company across departments while you have the opportunity to. Foster these relationships whenever you need advice, a department shift, or credit for your hard work when needing a reference.

5. Feel Inspired to Go Above and Beyond

Inevitably, when you believe in your company’s values, missions, decisions, and contribution to your community, you’re more likely to put in the time and hard work to give back to and show your gratitude. You may be more inclined to do what it takes to succeed, even during the hard times.

Even if you run into a couple roadblocks along the way, you may feel more prepared and ready to get back up and turn a failure into a success. When your values align with the company you work for, you may feel more inclined to take on new projects and opportunities to move your career to the next level without even recognizing it.

Career boost: Having a go-getter attitude is key to success within your company. Not to mention, when you’re considering taking up a side hustle, you’ll have the skills to do what it takes to grow your monthly income.

6. Ignite Your Creative Thinking Process

When you feel like you belong at your company, you have the confidence to say what you’re thinking and voice creative ideas that pop into your head. Not only does this help your team grow their expertise, you get creative with problem-solving.

In a fast-paced environment, you have to establish innovative problem-solving skills to keep your company one step ahead. A recent study showed that 82 percent of business owners believe creative thinking leads to better business benefits, revenue growth, and market share. When you’re able to brainstorm innovative ideas, you become more valuable to your company.

Career boost: When you take time to relax and contribute back to the community, you’re fostering an environment of creativity. When you increase your creativity, you prove to your team you’re a valuable asset.

How Working at a Socially Responsible Company Can Grow Your Career

Being able to offer your skill set to help out your community is one thing. To be able to contribute your time and effort with your coworkers is another. Not only do you get to give back with your expertise, select companies encourage their teams to do it on the company’s time. From saving on networking happy hours to increasing your worth in the workplace, there are a few ways to grow your career, and your savings, while taking the time to give back on your company’s time.

Check out our infographic to see nine companies that are giving back to their community and investing in their employees with their corporate socially responsible plans.

Corporate Social Responsibility

Sources: Starbucks Social Impact | Smart Recruiters | BrainyQuote | Digital Marketing Institute | Food Business News | Gulf News | Ni Business Info | Fronetics | AMEX | Conscious Company Media | Trailing Away | Monster | Smarp | Landing Adobe | Apple | LinkedIn | Salesforce | LinkedIn Social Impact | Zappos | Ben & Jerry’s Corporate Social Responsibility | Deloitte |

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