David Connor's blog

David Connor is a globally recognised influencer, explorer and evangelist for business as a force for social good, with particular passion and expertise in communications, strategy, technology, entrepreneurship and sport.

His 17 year CSR career has been split between winning awards for Everton Football Club in the English Premier League, and then with his own consultancy Coethica, where he has supported global brands, smaller businesses and numerous non-profit organisations.

David is often found on any available soapbox, even to audiences of only one, promoting an entrepreneurial approach to responsible business as an adviser, speaker and educator, and regularly all three via Twitter as @davidcoethica.

Is Social Good Overtaking Cats?

For the first time in quite a while I’ve noticed a distinct lack of cute / comedy cat posts (albeit somewhat distorted by buckets of ice water) and a stronger impression of more purpose based flashes in the social media world.

My gut, if backed up by more than a little professional insight into the data, feeling is that we may at long last be turning a social good communications corner. The activist world had too long preached at its audience to save the whale / panda / water / energy / planet to only see early plateauing of resulting engagement. Those...

Symantec Invest $2 Million To Tackle Youth Unemployment

If you are going to launch a new CSR initiative then having one of the most powerful and well-known politicians in the world standing next you may just help get it noticed.

Former US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, recently announced the new pilot programme called Symantec Cyber Career Connection (SC3) at the Clinton Global Initiative America Meeting in Denver.

The programme aims to address youth unemployment through

...

14 Twitter Chat Pro Tips

Twitter is a wonderfully accessible and democratising platform that lends itself perfectly to engaging in CSR and Sustainability stakeholder conversations. The audience of available agenda related professionals, brands, NGOs and enthusiasts is breath-taking in scope and also accessibility.

One increasingly important opportunity that Twitter provides is the Twitter Chat. You can corral an audience around a specific theme for a focused amount of time (usually 60 minutes) by using only a hashtag (#). It’s not a given that you’ll get people turning up, that of course takes effort to...

CSR & Sustainability Communications 101: How to Get the Most Out of LinkedIn Groups

LinkedIn Groups are an often overlooked tool to build expertise, position brands and increase audience reach for companies and individuals alike. We thought we would share some learning and tips from our experience so far:

3BL Media actually manages two Groups. The main 3BL Media Group (2000 members) is aimed at the professional corporate CSR / sustainability communicators community. We also manage the Justmeans Group (...

Shared Value: Business Opportunity

DAVID CONNOR 

Michael Porter knows his stuff. He’s a professor at Harvard and widely respected author on strategic thinking in business, especially of multiple books with ‘Competitive’ in the title.  More importantly though is his attention to the less traditional side of competitive business, my side, the good side.

The capitalist system is under siege.

One ongoing focus of this attention has been his interrogation of the world of CSR. A couple of years...

Charities Need to Increase Overheads

By David Connor

Dan Pallotta: The way we think about charity is wrong

If you work in social enterprise or a charitable organisation make sure you find 18 minutes and 55 seconds to watch the video below.

I’ve seen the link to this video enthusiastically being bounced around the social media world for a few days and I finally managed to squeeze in a watch over lunch today.

I’ll let Dan do the talking first and add...

The Climate Debate Gloves Are Off

I just had to share this to make sure you didn’t miss it.

THE best magazine cover, story and quote for quite some time. A bold statement to the core of the climate denier community. Congratulations Josh Tyrangiel (Editor) and all at Bloomberg Businessweek.

There is already a robust and increasing discourse around climate change brought on by Hurricane Sandy and this for me is a great stick in the ground for where we are at today. There is more hope for tomorrow.

...

Sandy Creates US Climate Hope?

As I watch the revealing impact of the storm in the US and the power of nature wreaking havoc on the financial heartland of the US I wonder if we are witnessing the pivotal moment in the US climate change debate?

We cannot not underestimate the impact of an again vulnerable New York,  to overcome stubborn political denial and corporate lobbying. From a detached, long distance perspective I get an uneasy feeling of similarity to watching the initial aftermath of the...

One Man’s Vision Of A Greener Oil Industry

Sam Wurzelbacher had his moment after a serendipitous encounter with Barack Obama and Joe The Plumberwas born, and given a platform.

We now take for granted the opportunities technologies like social media create. These days almost everybody is a click away, and sometimes the big names even respond in person. Now, if we can better connect those at grassroots with ideas and real experiences...

A Call to the Man Behind Europe's CSR Strategy

It's been four months since the EU launched its 2011 - 2014 strategy for CSR and Tom Dodd, CSR Policy Adviser at the European Commission, was one of the key players in delivering the updated definition and overall document. In a project that would have to manage the expectations of an incredibly varied stakeholder group, I believe Tom and his colleagues have done a sterling job in producing such a concise document in the relatively short time period of only 10 months in practical terms. An impressive accomplishment for a process you would expect to be a bureaucratic nightmare.

A...

BASF Sets High Standards for CSR Reporting in Germany

BASF Corporation, one of Europe's leading CSR lights, recently published their latest integrated annual report.

There aren't many companies at all hitting their environmental targets, never mind hitting them nine years early, but BASF have done exactly that. There will of course be an argument hidden in the detail behind the headlines, to suggest that this may be more of weak or pessimistic goal setting than the...

CSR - Letters from Europe

In case you hadn't noticed, the majority of online content and conversation in the Corporate Social Responsibility space originates in the good old US of A. Maybe that is no surprise as population size alone provides robust reasoning in addition to a more communicative culture, than many more of my reserved UK based compatriots.

In an effort to redress the balance, this is the first of a series of weekly blogs offering a focus on CSR related activity from the European side of the Atlantic, where we stumble into two immediate hurdles. We need to clarify what we mean by CSR,...

Social Media, Sustainability and Transparency

Two posts in less than a week? I must officially be an insomniac.

Tonight’s excuse is that I’m waiting for my laptop to painfully slowly back-up before setting off to Paris to take part in Societe Generale’s Citizen Act finale.

I was invited to take part in today’s Guardian’s Sustainable Business live online Q&A on ‘Using social media to communicate sustainability’.

If nothing else I’d...

That Man and That Quote Again

 It’s 1.34am and I’m lying awake in a hotel room in London after 20 hours of travelling, meetings and an enjoyable, if whirlwind, debate entitled ‘CSR: Myth or Reality‘. I was invited to sit on the panel with Tony Needham, Head of Finance and Business from the New Economics Foundation and Clare  Woodcraft, Deputy Director of the Shell Foundation, and offer an opinion on the event title, which provided an educational, occasionally provocative (as oil companies, even their charitable arm,  tend to...

2011 – A Good Year for CSR Communications in Europe

Time for a quick update on my movements in the world of CSR.

After a couple of years talking with all those friendly sorts at 3BL Media, sharing blog posts, tweets,  Skype conversations and even yours truly sat in front of a video camera for 3BL TV, we decided it was time to announce our formal engagement.

Whilst Coethica continues to grow with all involved...

Will ISO 26000 Change The World?

After six years of consultation and development, Geneva saw the launch of ISO 26000 yesterday.

ISO 26000:2010 Guidance on social responsibility to be exact. Please note the word ‘Guidance‘, that is, this is not a certifiable standard.

In an industry already accelerating toward burgeoning crowds of standards, rankings and frameworks, all of undulating degrees of credibility and usefulness, it feels to me like this new kid on the block will receive a subdued welcome.

According to ISO the aim is to “provide harmonized, globally relevant guidance...

Microsoft’s CSR Accelerator Summit

It’s easy to forget just how pervasive Microsoft’s reach is from Xbox to Office or their effect on everybody’s lives over the past 35 years.

Ok, they may have lost market value top dog status to Apple, market share in the internet browser sector or have harbingers of doom awaiting the monster to fall as the Cloud approaches, but with competition such as Google acting like a righteous teenager, Facebook playing like a petulant child and Apple’s aspirations heading toward megalomania with their use of applications to control content, Microsoft could be said to be enjoying a...

Green Denial Amongst Smaller Businesses

Houston, we have a problem, and I mean we ALL have a problem.

The UK Environment Agency yesterday reported that more than 50% (from a sample of 7000) of small and medium sized businesses said “an environmental policy was of ‘no use’ to their business in the current climate.” The same research also showed a fall in the appreciation about their...

CSR for Smaller Business – Getting Organised

A few months back I decided to summarise Coethica’s experiences of supporting smaller business using CSR to help their bottom line. 

The idea at the start was to demonstrate how you can quickly and inexpensively add value to your business by using concepts found within the CSR agenda.

The suggestions have been practical, easy to understand and requiring minimum financial and time investment. I’d like to bring it all together to begin to look at a more strategic approach and widen your business radar. This is where the real value of being an ethical and responsible business lies.

Initiatives are great but by understanding the bigger picture a little more you can start to embed a more efficient and profitable ethos across your company, your supply chain and to your customers.

The previous posts focused on:

10 Top CSR Tips

Environment

Suppliers

Community Engagement

Subscribe to RSS - David Connor's blog