Best Practice Reports

Inspiring and Leading in Times of Change: Insights and Best Practices from The 2017 Civic 50

In this report, we are pleased to present the highlights, benchmarking data and best practices of the 2017 Civic 50, which illustrate the best examples of how the corporate community can lead and inspire during times of rapid and complex change. In fact, as communities are grappling with diverse challenges, this year’s Civic 50 demonstrate how companies can lead with their values to build stronger companies and more resilient communities. Encouraged by calls for responsible citizenship from shareholders, employees and customers — but also driven by a desire to build trust and define their brands — Civic 50 companies are putting communities at the center of business. We hope that the insights and best practices in this report provide guidance to help inform business managers and corporate citizenship leaders who want their organizations to turn good intentions into sound business practices.

Key findings from the 2017 Civic 50:

  • Being a community-minded company is about better engagement, not more. Companies are adopting strategic practices to accelerate impact in communities. Skills-based volunteering, multi-faceted investment and matching gifts are on the rise, and companies are taking on leadership roles to advance social issues.
  • Companies are taking to heart the adage of “doing well by doing good” and putting it at the center of business. Civic 50 honorees use community engagement to drive key business functions, including employee engagement (88 percent), diversity and inclusion (84 percent), marketing and PR (84 percent), and skill development (72 percent).
  • Civic 50 companies are building community values into their business and empowering changemakers to be a powerful force for change. For example, 62 percent of Civic 50 companies include community engagement as a formal component of employees’ performance reviews, emphasizing its importance to organizational culture. This is up from 50 percent in 2016. Also, executive leaders at nearly 70 percent of Civic 50 companies support community engagement by participating in community activities at least once a month.
  • Civic 50 companies are demonstrating their impact by measuring what matters—social and business outcomes. While storytelling and volunteer recognition are important, Civic 50 companies are also using robust measurement practices to evaluate and demonstrate how they are making an impact.

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Civic 50 Report Archives

The 2016 Civic 50: Turning Good Intentions into Sound Business Practices

The 2014 Civic 50: A Roadmap for Corporate Community Engagement in America [PDF]

2012 Executive Summary