Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) plays a key part of one of our modular graduate development programmes. Not only do the graduates get the opportunity to add value back into the community but the experience also provides important learning opportunities.
In fact CSR provides the ultimate experiential learning and forms a key part of our overall approach to graduate development. For this particular client the approach is used to emphasise key behaviours relating to strategic thinking, problem solving, project management and decision making.
Each year we work with our client to partner with a different community organisation. Yesterday I observed the graduates completing a variety of projects for a local community centre and was struck by the strong teamwork and commitment to achieving results that the experience instilled. For some organisations CSR is used to help with team building and you could say that this in itself is enough. For me though, I think the real value comes from extracting the learning from the experience and translating it into genuine behavioural change.
In this module, the CSR project is the meat in the sandwich between a day of planning and a day of facilitated review. This ensures that the rich learning is extracted and applied at an individual and team level.