Turning Purpose into Action happens via CSR, HR and Innovation

Sven Dekker

by Sven Dekker

On July the 6th, we hosted a meetup for corporates that already use our Employee Engagement Platform designed to help them meet their ambitious CSR objectives faster. The goal of the meetup? To get in touch with each other, share inevitable frustration (after all changing the world is not an uneasy task), but most importantly: to share best practises.

Here are the top 5 takeaways from the discussions we had with our customers (i.a. Booking and Accenture) and an expert panel. My biggest insight is that CSR, Innovation and HR are really interconnected and they should find each other in the organisation, as the following examples illustrate.

1. CSR is becoming more integrated with HR (talent management strategy) and Innovation (enabling bottom up idea generation)

In several discussions, the integration of CSR in HR and Innovation came up. CSR might eventually cease to exist as all departments take the impact they have on people, planet and profit to the core of their business. It is something we strongly believe in, and I’m happy that we’re seeing actual changes in organisations regarding this transition. The connection between HR and Innovation is also becoming stronger: happy employees are more creative and innovative. Getting the opportunity and freedom to think about innovations makes people happier, so it’s a great win-win.

2. Greatest innovation pitfall: we have to be the smart ones and come up with all ideas

Expert Dominique Hermans, CSR & Circular Economy Manager at Alliander, stumbled upon the believe that the innovation department and senior managers should generate all the new ideas. She managed to turn this thinking around by enabling employees to come up with ideas and suggestions on how to improve their business. She created the platform SamenSlim (Together Smart) where all employees could upload their ideas. The younger generation helped elder employees to submit their ideas on the platform. The platform generated enough ideas for the next ten years!

3. Projects without engagement are doomed from the start

Expert Marieke Gombault, Sustainability & Circular Economy Advisor, explained why engagement is crucial for ‘getting things done’: she referred to findings that show that 98% of failed projects had a very good project plan with clear targets. So what made projects successful? Engagement on the project was the defining factor. Getting people to act. We believe that letting people find their personal purpose in their work and projects really helps in improving work- and project results.

4. Legacy Approach as a concrete tool to find people’s purpose

Marieke Gombault further explained how they got people to think about the ‘why’ in their jobs, their purpose, with a very smart method, the so-called Legacy Approach: what if we could make people think about their legacy, not later; but now: what would they change? What would they want to achieve? What would change for the company, yourself, and your colleagues?

5. Facilitate new generation in GIG-economy: change organisation with bottom up inspiration

“We’re dealing with the GIG-economy where people have several part-time jobs. Employees define their own careers, instead of waiting for their boss to determine their growth path”, explains expert Maartje de Lau, former Global Talent Management Lead at Randstad Holding. How can you facilitate your employees in this trend? The organisation including its leadership has to change, and the knowledge to do so is already present in your organisation: you just have to fetch it bottom up.

Would you like to know more about these insights, or about our up-coming corporate meetup events? Or would you like to have a coffee with me to discuss how to take CSR and/or your companies Purpose in your company to the next level? Drop us a message, I’m looking forward to hearing from you.

Anna Chojnacka