Recently, Bart King posted a fascinating article on necessity of corporations to help manifest social change. With the economy only just recovering, and our Federal Government largely floundering in self-created doldrums, the power to enact social change is shifting from government centric to people centric. But this is not really a change; it’s more a subtle shift in thinking, away from the notion that social reforms are enacted through government regulation and back toward government and corporations working in concert for the common good. The new Prosumer Report, from which King’s article derives much of its information, contains a clue about this shift in public opinion (*.pdf):
…[A] July 2012 survey by Gallup found that 87 percent of Americans want the president to make reducing corruption in the federal government a top priority, second only to the 92 percent who want him to focus on creating jobs.
With stats like that, it’s no wonder more people are looking back to corporations to affect societal change. Looking down the list, you’ll notice many of the other items fall into societal categories:
- “Ensuring the long-term stability of Social Security & Medicare,”
- “Making college education available and affordable,” and
- “Improving the nation’s public schools,” to name a few.
To the last two, Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp. has heeded the call to action. Through our EdAhead program, we’re diffusing the cost of college education for our employees, their children and their grandchildren, and helping to fund local schools at the same time, by providing employees with a corporate backed 529 program that garners both a company match, a la many 401(k)s, AND makes donations to local schools. (Details here: EdAhead FAQ)
The response to our EdAhead has program has been intriguing! What started out as a video for our 600 plus employees, has received more than 200,000 views on YouTube and dozens of businesses reaching out to inquire about implementing it at their companies. (We welcome it: Get Involved with EdAhead)
We business leaders need to have a longer lens when it comes to developing a qualified talent pool, and education has to become everybody’s business – parents, teachers, the government and yes, corporations.
We invite the rest of corporate America to join us in our mission to help educate the next generation of thinkers, doers, and leaders. Through our combined power, we can provide youth the necessary tools to forge a stronger, more durable economy, and support local schools and communities in which we serve in the process. Join the movement!