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Karrikins Group share insights from new corporate community investment research

November 27, 2015

Dominic Trewick, Head of Strategy and Partnerships at SVP Founding Member Karrikins Group, shares insights from their recent thought leadership series in Auckland, Melbourne, and Sydney, and their newly released perspective paper ‘Strategy and Measurement – Towards Lead Practice in Community Investment.’


We recently had the pleasure of hosting our premier Corporate Responsibility (CR) thought leadership series and launching our perspective paper ‘Strategy and Measurement – Towards Lead Practice in Community Investment.’ It was awesome to see such excellent engagement and support from our Auckland, Sydney and Melbourne events in the last fortnight, with packed rooms full of beautiful CR minds focused on doing well by doing good!

The future of CR and shared value is what so many of us in the sector are focusing on unpacking. In the words of Peter Fuda, we judge others on their impact while we judge ourselves on our intent. Being strategic and demonstrating impact (business and social) is also where the conversation is at right now. Frankly, it is probably where the conversation should remain for the foreseeable future. However, our primary research shows that ultimately we are not nearly as strategic as we think we are…and perhaps more importantly, as we need to be. Our view is that failure of strategy is rarely about inability to predict the future but rather about poor assumptions being made about the present.

The good news is that right now there is a live and dynamic discovery occurring across Australia and New Zealand, seeking to understand how we can become as strategic within CR as we need and want to be. In our November thought leadership event series, we have seen the ‘face’ of this debate across the regions, within multiple sectors and across all company sizes – small to large, entrenched through to disruptor.  We heard panellists say that customers now expect businesses to consider the community as one of their key stakeholders. We discussed the important role of corporate culture in trying to ensure alignment to community investment goals, and of its special importance when operating across multiple geographies. Panel members and our audiences debated the different ways the shared value movement is impacting the corporate sector as opposed to not-for-profit organisations and heard the calls for better alignment to strategy from both sides of that coin, while recognising shared value isn’t a magic bullet designed to completely replace traditional corporate philanthropy. Marketers, sustainability managers, foundation managers, corporate affairs and human resources managers with an interest in community investment shared their experiences in taking their diverse organisations on a journey towards creating more impact with their corporate investment dollars, or with the corporate dollars that their organisation receives.

There is definitely movement afoot! Join us and this cohort of CR future shapers, in leading the conversation within your organisation, network and community. To help you along, our contribution to the conversation and resulting leadership we hope you will be a part of, can be found here in our research report called ‘Strategy and Measurement: Towards Lead-Practice Community Investment’. The paper incorporates findings from the research survey conducted by Karrikins Group in 2015, engaging 39 corporate responsibility leaders from companies in Australia and New Zealand across a range of sectors, conversations with select senior leaders from both the commercial and community space, Karrikins Group’s first-hand experiences working on the design, development, execution and measurement of large-scale, innovative community investment programs around the world as well as a review of others’ literature and research.

Concepts, ‘case’, primary data and tools are there for you to use and wield within your organisations. Remember though…only for the forces of good!

With these tools and those already on your CR action belt, we hope that you will ask the question within your organisation, “How can we do well by doing good?”

Click here to download the report

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