Summary Report: Forum on Engaging the Community
This report summarizes key lessons from NBS's community engagement forum, which brought together representatives from business, government, and academia.
Effective community engagement results in measurable benefits, including cost savings, enhanced reputation, and innovation.
On February 29, 2008, NBS held a forum to explore the concept and practice community engagement further. The audience represented a diversity of interests: 50 per cent of participants were managers and consultants from various industries; 50 per cent came from academia, government, and non-governmental organizations.
This report provides summary of key learnings from the forum. It builds on the systematic review of research on community engagement
commissioned by NBS.
Joint solutions create better outcomes. Firms need to start early and give stakeholders ownership over the engagement process. Firms also need to understand the communities with which they engage. 'Mental modelling’ is one way in which EPCOR learns the values of the communities in which they wish to do business.
There are no easy answers. Community and stakeholder engagement is unique to each company, industry, community, and situation. Processes and best practices can be developed, but these must be flexible enough to deal with the nuances of each engagement process. But we learned today that the universal values of honesty, trust, respect and transparency are critical for healthy engagement leading to positive collaboration and outcomes.
Ms. Jocelyne Daw, Vice-President, Marketing & Social Engagement, Imagine Canada
- Business contributions help build strong and healthy communities, which is good for business.
- Businesses that stand for something that their employees and customers care about, find that the community stands with them.
- Businesses are moving from supporting an organization, to supporting a cause, to supporting outcomes.
- Read page 19 of the full report
- Download the presentation slides