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Community Math: Multiplying Employee Power to Fight Global Hunger

Cisco’s 63,000 employees live and work in hundreds of cities globally. No matter where we are, we’re committed to using our expertise and conducting our business in a way that ultimately benefits our communities. That’s core to our culture. Our 2011 Global Hunger Relief Campaign, which just closed, raised a record $4.1 million. It’s a vital example of the power that arises when employees take action and leverage networks – both human and technology – to multiply our impact.

Over two months, our employees donated $1.6 million to more than 130 food agencies through Cisco’s unique global matching gifts IT solution, Community Connection. That tool allowed us to quickly aggregate and approve donations, and disburse matching funds from the Cisco Foundation and Chairman Emeritus John Morgridge’s TOSA Foundation, bringing the total delivered to $4.1 million. Employees also volunteered thousands of hours to food agencies, recording that time in the tool to deliver additional matching funds.

For 15 years, Cisco has united with food agencies to help serve hungry people. Our employees give significant time and expertise, along with corporate product donations, to multiply the impact of each dollar donated. So, although our campaign delivers critical support, it’s only part of a multi-layered community strategy that ensures nonprofits maximize efficiency and scalability by using networking technologies. That’s why, in part, agencies are providing 28 million meals with Cisco’s 2011 campaign proceeds.

When our network of employees connects to a common purpose, impact multiplies. We all can access a network – online or through friends, families and villages – to make extraordinary change. Learn more about Cisco’s work in communities around the world at our new CSR website, launched today.

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Stop the CSR Pity-Fest, Tell the Whole Story

I met Daniel last month in Mexico City.  He is an outpatient at a drug rehabilitation center where we sponsor a Cisco Networking Academy.  Daniel and I met at the center, and then went together to his home in one of the poorest parts of Mexico City.  As we stood on the porch overlooking his neighborhood, Daniel told me that his family doesn’t believe he can make his way out of this life, can ever do something more.  The odds are certainly low; making a different life for himself, a life he’s never seen modeled, would be a dream come true but also a miracle. Read More »

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Social Media Can Accelerate the Social Good

Recently, I participated in a conversation with our LinkedIn community on GETideas.org. The crux of the discussion was labels--should there be a universal taxonomy for terms such as Global Education, and would trying to foster global adoption of such terms speed up the transformation of the societal challenges we face today? It got me thinking about all sorts of terms that pop into our language stream. One day you’re talking about the “inequalities of the distribution of wealth and the effects of taxation on global markets;” the next day you’re texting an associate and summing up your thought stream with the word “Occupy”.

In my preparation for a panel discussion called Why enterprise Social Media Loves Social Good?, I poked around online to see if there was any consistency in the meaning for the term “social good”. Almost all the discussions and posts I found connected “social good” directly to its use within the business community. While businesses vary in their approaches to social good, this definition seems to be a common one: “A good or service that benefits the largest number of people in the largest possible way. Some classic examples of social goods are clean air, clean water and literacy; in addition, many economic proponents include access to services such as healthcare in their definition of the social or “common good”. (Source: http://www.investopedia.com/terms/s/social_good.asp) Read More »

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Social Media in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)

February 13, 2012 at 6:00 am PST

This post was authored by my colleague Jessica Kelly (@JessGoddesse)

If you’re wondering why social media should be an key  part of your communications strategy, just note these current statistics demonstrating the ubiquity of the medium:

  • Facebook now boasts more than 800 million active users worldwide, and more than half of these log on to the network on any given day.
  • Twitter too is no slouch (and growing), with 200 million registered users, one quarter of whom tweet daily.

Want more justifying numbers? A recent infographic on MediaBistro lists more compelling stats―like, say, the fact that 56% of consumers are likely to recommend a brand to a friend after becoming a fan on Facebook, and 20% of marketers have closed sales using Twitter.

Given that social media networks are timely (if not immediate) communications platforms that are interactive, and therefore― if used correctly (that is, authentically)―engaging, their success in marketing should come as no surprise. Read More »

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Calling All Nonprofits: Does Your Video Tell a Powerful Story?

February 6, 2012 at 6:16 am PST

Did you know that by the end if 2012, videos will account for 50 percent of all Internet traffic?

Online videos are powerful storytelling tools. Many nonprofits are using them to attract donors and volunteers, and to multiply the impact they can have on the people and communities they serve.

As a sponsor of the 2012 DoGooder Nonprofit Awards, Cisco will get a chance to recognize four nonprofits that have successfully used video to create meaningful, positive change. Read More »

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