As public relations professionals our job is to sell an idea or brand of the companies we work for. We have been taught to only represent clients or organizations that we will stand behind and trust. How can we get our audiences on board with our ideas if we ourselves don’t believe in the company’s values? This is where the importance of civic engagement and social responsibility become huge aspects of our careers.
As millennials, we bring new ideas and outlooks to the workforce. We make purchases based on the social responsibility of companies, rather than just the products they are selling. We aren’t just looking for a high salary; we also want jobs that will make us feel fulfilled and happy. The corporate world has taken note, and more companies are taking on nonprofit values to become more appealing to consumers.
“Integrating corporate socially responsible policies into one’s business is perhaps the most effective way for business to increase their profit margins and retain employees, all while improving the lives of their consumers and the planet.” – Karen Kwiatek
Perspective employees are looking to work for companies that have an uplifting environment, ethical standards, and are transparent in business. Being socially responsible is important for all businesses today. With social responsibility comes civic engagement. Millennial job seekers also want to work for organizations that make a difference in the community.
It is no longer acceptable for a company to just write a check to a nonprofit. People want to see brands going above and beyond their philanthropic duty. We want our efforts, and the efforts of the companies we work for, to seem worthwhile. We want to know that we are actually making a difference. Government entities are no longer the driving force of change in communities. It is our job as people in public relations to spread good ideas and be promoters of fulfilling actions.
The Big Buddy Program models itself on helping and inspiring the youth of Baton Rouge. They hope to make a positive difference in the lives of children who don’t have role models to look up to. Civic engagement is the prime component of the Big Buddy Program. All of the employees, mentors, and volunteers of Big Buddy devote their time and energy to the community through their various jobs and good deeds. We at Lagniappe Public Relations are representing Big Buddy and are helping them promote a higher quality of life for the children Big Buddy impacts. Not one of our efforts is driven by selfishness; it is all out of improving a societal issue.
The mission of Big Buddy Program is to provide access to positive role models and learning experiences to children who lack these valuable resources in the Greater Baton Rouge community.
Caroline Beslin is a senior studying mass communication at Louisiana State University. She hopes to pursue a career in public relations in the New Orleans area after graduation. Caroline is an avid runner and enjoys competing in races across the south. She would love to one day combine her love of meeting new people, hearing their stories, and learning from others to create meaningful work in the PR world- while still having the time to bake the perfect batch of chocolate chip cookies.