People say data is boring. The worst. Even mind numbing…
…Until it helps them get what they want. Data. Blah, blah, blah, blah. I know, half of you have already fallen asleep. But wait. Don’t sleep yet. Data could be just what you need when trying to get your dream social initiative approved. Allowing data to recite history and paint a picture of the future within a business case through unemotional, factual information in concert with an individual’s passion for a social project is virtually unstoppable and can get YOU what you want.
So where do you start with that data thing? Look at the historical performance of your corporate social responsibility programs and compare that performance to industry trends and benchmarks for similar programs. There are a number of trend reports focused on CSR that can be used to site as the industry standard performance. Personally, I look for industry trends and benchmarks that are solely based on factual performance data just as the Industry Review: Corporate Social Responsibility report does.
Once you have a reliable report and your historical numbers, start to overlay your programs performance with your chosen industry performance report. You will see your CSR program strengths and (dare to say?) weaknesses. Some of the questions that you may ask yourself are:
- Do employees have a high engagement rate in giving, volunteering or responding to natural disasters?
- Do employees excel with team events?
- Are employees motivated with incentives to give and volunteer?
- Where am I seeing year-over-year growth?
- Where are employees gravitating to show support within the CSR program?
The answers to these questions will help you decide which unemotional, factual points should be included in your presentation to support the CSR social initiative pitch. Use the historical data and industry trends to outline how your dream social initiative could become a reality, as well as set goals to measure if the program was a success.
Hopefully this quick exercise will leave you feeling optimistic about your dream initiative and set your pitch presentation on track to get an immediate green light. If the data does not support your initiative as originally envisioned, don’t give up! Now you have a clearer picture into performance trends and you will be able to revise your original vision into a vision of success.