Set goals and determine touch points to measure them
The first step after creating your CSR team and communications plan is to set clear and measurable goals you can use to track your progress. Meeting with your community partners is a good way to begin this process. It will allow you to identify common objectives, and to establish goals that benefit both parties.
Begin with common goals and touch points, such as increased website traffic (for both parties), number of first-time customers, sales growth in a particular segment or for a particular product, and your employees’ understanding of the partnership.
Next, you should decide when, how, and who will measure each goal and touch point. Create a plan for communicating these measurements to the CSR team and to employees of both organizations.
Why is setting measurable goals important?
Many companies choose to skip setting measurable goals, and move ahead with their CSR plan without the guidance of clear objectives. This is a huge mistake! Setting goals is a critical piece of the CSR puzzle, and if you don’t have a way to measure whether or not your CSR initiative was a success, you will not be able to achieve your goal of giving strategically. In addition, when initiatives come under fire from executives you’ll want to prove the value of your program easily.
Indeed, all of your CSR efforts will impact your bottom line, so it is important to take every step in the process seriously and to pay attention to detail. This includes finding a way to measure your work and determine whether or not you are achieving your stated goals!
Setting measurable goals allows you to strengthen your community partnerships by enhancing communication and creating a clear pathway for future collaboration. As mentioned above, you can’t set your goals without talking through your common objectives with your community partners. Setting your CSR goals requires clear and constant communication.
When you meet or exceed your stated goals, it gives you a chance to share and celebrate these successes within your CSR team and among the employees of both organizations. This communication will increase support for your CSR initiative among employees–if they know exactly what is being achieved, they will be better able to stand behind it!