A common problem across smaller nonprofits, and even medium-sized ones is their inability to retain relationships with Corporate organisations in India. One of the ways that work most effectively is establishing a connection with a local representative i.e. a CSR Manager (full-time resource) or CSR representative (employee who also looks into CSR volunteering).
People matter the most, and the sooner you can make that link with an organisation your chances of building a relationship exists.
Colour their Passions
Firstly, every CSR manager is passionate about certain areas in the field of development. Which means, when they join a new organisation they will first dive into what aligns with their beliefs or worldview. To learn and grow in a company, he/she looks for the most relatable focus area to gain a stronghold. Get in touch to know their interests and what they are looking for in a nonprofit partner. You may know the CEO or Leader, how much of their time can you get realistically?
Synergy before Energy
Secondly, the CSR Manager is burdened either by a lack of information or just overwhelmed, when he or she joins a firm. Stick to the point by doing your homework. Be precise with your pitch and don’t go all over the place or even try to impress. Focus on synergies for both organisations. Help them make the right decision. Suggest another organisation if they are a better fit. You won’t be forgotten for the good deed.
Thirdly, if the organisation is huge on employee volunteering, connect with an employee if you already know someone. How does that help? The CSR Manager will trust his colleague more, and would prefer to hear from them on the nonprofit. The key advantage for the CSR Manager is, he or she gets an employee to champion for the particular nonprofits cause internally.
Detail, power in Partnership
Four, help them understand how the partnership can grow with media support. Both mainstream and social media. Share past stories, give them as much detail into any coverage you’ve received in the past.
Tell incredible Stories
Five, tell them impact stories. How lives are being changed. Provide insights on the landscape of development. Highlight the impact of donations and employee volunteering. CSR managers require some data, and a lot of stories that showcase impact. Keep it short and to the point. They’ll do the rest of the storytelling internally.
There are a lot more ways to develop a relationship as you get intentional with your engagement.
If you are a nonprofit and need more insights or consulting on building focused relationships with corporates, please feel free to write to me.