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How to Work for Companies That Focus on Social Good


A few months ago, social media feeds exploded with friends and families dumping buckets of ice on their heads to raise awareness for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and encourage donations to research. This viral challenge, started by Pete Frates, who was diagnosed with ALS in March 2012, demonstrated the dedication of millennials — and the companies they work for — to social good.

(Photo Credit: Comcast Washington State/Flickr)

In fact, not only did individuals participate in the “ice bucket challenge,” but news feeds on social media were filled with companies participating in the challenge as a team, then challenging other companies to do the same. While working for companies that offer great health benefits, a well-stocked kitchen, and ample time off has its perks, there is something to be said for working for a company that values giving back to the community. So how can you find a company to work for that focuses on social good?

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Companies like TOMS and Burt’s Bees have paved the way for hundreds of other companies to incorporate social good into their basic corporate values. If you already admire one of these brands, the easy way in the door to one of these companies is to find a way to connect with the company and keep an eye out for any openings. 

Of course, these jobs are wildly popular — largely in part because of what they stand for — so it may take some extra effort. Here are a few ways to engage with with companies that focus on social good, including:

1. Join online conversations.

This job-seeking tip is tried and true, and works no matter what kind of company you’re looking to work for. However, when it comes to socially conscious companies, there is often a heightened amount of dialogue about what the company is doing and their impact on the community.

In Mashable, Amit Chauhan suggests that before you even consider applying, be sure you’re part of the conversation so that you know what is going on.

As you get more involved with these groups and conversations, companies will surface either through their own contributions to the conversation or in other members’ mentions,” says Chauhan. “For example, a group member may mention something that a company did for the cause, or a company may donate to the cause and post about their efforts on social media.”

This way, the company you’re applying to can do their due diligence during the interview process and discover that you care as much as they do.

2. Research companies.

If you’re simply passionate about giving back to your community — whether that’s local or global — but don’t know what company would be the best fit for you, start by researching companies that are deeply involved with social good campaigns. Some of these include Nike, which according to Fast Company has compiled a database of materials it uses into an industry archive focused on the environmental impact of products. This goal with this project is to eliminate the use of hazardous chemicals in its goods by 2020.

Another innovative company focused on social good? Bloomberg‘s philanthropic arm, Bloomberg Philanthropies, which uses data-driven solutions to find the most pragmatic remedies for numerous social ills. One current program the team is working on focusing on combating global tobacco use. By tackling just this problem, Bloomberg can address six of the world’s top 10 causes of death, and aims to save the 14,000 people killed by tobacco use every day.

3. Implement social good in your own company.

Finally, if you want to work for a company that values social good, you don’t necessarily need to look for a new job. Another article in Fast Company suggests ways that you can implement social good in your own company. Some tips include finding a cause that’s meaningful to you and leading by example — so don’t just encourage others to volunteer on the weekend while you sleep in. If you’re a manager, you can also do your best to ensure that any time off taken to do volunteer work is fully paid.

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How important to you is working for a company that values social good? We want to hear from you! Leave a comment or join the discussion on Twitter.

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