By: Benjamin Laker, Forbes Contributer
Date: Monday, October 17, 2022

The rise of business leaders being philanthropic is a growing trend attributed to several factors, including globalization, advancing economic inequality, and the rise of social media making it easier for business leaders to connect with causes and organizations.

As business leaders become more philanthropic, ensuring that causes they support are effective and efficient in their use of resources is essential. One way to do this is by conducting due diligence. Organizations such as GiveWell, ImpactMatters, and The Life You Can Save conduct research on nonprofits and provide information that helps donors make informed decisions about their giving.

Another way business leaders can ensure their philanthropy is effective is by using their influence and resources to advocate for policy changes that significantly impact the causes they care about. Take Smartsheet, for example. As a partner for McLaren’s F1 Racing team, the Seattle-based technology company is reimagining what sports sponsorship can accomplish. Smartsheet is using its brand to generate awareness for McLaren and its platform to raise money for several charities, including The Hidden Genius Project.

Brandon Nicholson, founding executive director of The Hidden Genius Project, said, “Smartsheet and their partner, McLaren Racing, have shared values of changing how the world works and plays with core values of ‘we before me’ and ‘performing with integrity,’’ in an email. “So Smartsheet decided to flip the script on their partnership and use the benefits of it to put a worthy cause front and centre instead of themselves.”

Lebene Soga, the associate professor of management practice and entrepreneurship at Henley Business School, said in an interview, “for organizations to make a better impact in a world of highly informed clients or customers, they must consider what the customer deeply cares about, not simply what the customer wants.” Soga added, “the era of ‘doing it our way’ has now been replaced by an era of shared values, and our management practices must start to reflect this.”

So, what does this trend mean for the future of philanthropy? [To continue reading, click HERE.]

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