Step four: Create a CSR team
The strategy you have created requires people to track, report, publicize and maintain. Compile a team of employees from all different functions of the brewery to help implement the plan and meet monthly. Empower each member of the team to research what trends are occurring and see if there is something your brewery needs to do.
A CSR team may not be needed at the beginning of this process because the original strategy and plan should be created amongst all ownership and department directors. As the CSR management team is established, the CEO, owner or someone on the executive team should be a part of the team to continually see how CSR is complementing their vision.
For newer breweries: Your team may be small, but it is mighty! Do what you can. Delegate what you can. Or hire an outside source to help.
For established breweries: Utilize a diverse team throughout the company with different backgrounds and experiences. Diversity is a powerful tool when utilized properly and this team can really help your brewery thrive.
Step five: Track and report progress
As data is collected throughout the year, the CSR management team should be tracking all sustainability, donation and volunteer measures. Compare results to goals and reflect on successes, weaknesses and areas on which to improve.
For newer breweries: Track what you can now and keep it consistent. You may not have time to fully analyze it now, but you will at some point. For all donations, get receipts from the charities or schools so they can be used as tax deductions at the end of year.
For established breweries: In my work thus far, I have been surprised by how much is not tracked or how underutilized data is amongst some breweries. Collect data, look for trends and outliers, and turn it into real knowledge for the brewery.
If you can complete these five steps, your CSR should be more organized, more strategic and more impactful on the community. You should also realize that CSR affects all aspects of the brewery and that all functions need to be aligned to achieving your future vision.
Finally, you should see that you have built yourself a more efficient path for obtaining the resources you need in the future to operate. How you are functioning today will be different than it will be in five or 10 years. So, create a CSR plan to support your vision of making more delicious beer and becoming a good corporate citizen in your community.
Brian Phipps is a Colorado native and passionate about helping the community. He learned the importance of volunteering and giving back through organizations, friends and my family and has worked in the nonprofit world for 10 years with several corporate partners to obtain donations, as well as publicize and report returns on those contributions. For more information about Confluence LLC, be sure to check out the company’s website.