How Generosity Is Making Your Business a Better Place

By Ann Elliott

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Many business owners wonder if generosity is a smart business decision.
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Image courtesy of suphakit73 at
There is an ongoing debate about Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) for business. CSR is usually associated with big companies. Regardless of the size, your business can incorporate CSR in its business model. It is an act of generosity. Companies embrace social responsibility not only for the benefit of the community in which they operate but also for the benefit of the company. Going above and beyond what the law requires is an act of generosity. Companies can help alleviate social problems and enhance communities. If small to medium size companies (the ones with up to 1,000 employees) leave all the social responsibility to the BIG companies, we are missing many opportunities to get things done. Consider that 70% of the work force is in a company of up to 1,000 employees. Here are 7 ways that a business of any size can implement social responsibility:
  1. Recycle. Save waste from the landfill by recycling paper, cardboard, aluminum cans, ink cartridges, batteries, glass, plastic, and electronics. Provide reusable shopping bags imprinted with your company logo to your customers.
  1. Reduce your carbon footprint. Lower thermostats in the winter and raise them in the summer. Use CFL light bulbs. Turn off lights in spaces that are unoccupied. Shop locally.
  1. Support the local community. Volunteer, especially where you can offer your expertise. Teach financial literary [accounting professionals] or build a home [construction professionals] as examples. In return, strong communities are able to support local businesses.
  1. Create good work environments. Provide flexibility for working parents. Foster collaboration not competition internally. This creates a feeling of safety. It builds trust.
  1. Share your knowledge and expertise. Help others succeed. Giving is linked to the hormone oxytocin, which promotes warmth and a connection to others.
  1. Demonstrate kindness and respect. Your position and standing is not diminished by treating others well.
  1. Compensate your employees well. Pay whatever you can to get great employees. Flexible benefits and developmental opportunities are part of the package.
CSR is generosity in action. Not only do you build good will in the community but inside your business, too. Like cash, generosity works best when it is flowing, not hoarded. Generosity is like a boomerang, what you put out comes back. Companies that have a strong sense of purpose and keep an eye on their financial position while serving their customers passionately are well suited to embrace social responsibility. Those companies are more attractive to millennials because they want to be part of something that matters. Generosity makes your business a better place. ©2015 Ann Elliott All Rights Reserved

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Ann Elliott

Ann Elliott, founder of The Berkana Company, excels at leadership strategy

An expert at helping business leaders enjoy more profits and improved productivity with less stress, she blends fun and excitement with executive coaching and training to yield results for her clients.

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