Why Philanthropy is More Important Than Ever for Entrepreneurs and CEOs

Why Philanthropy is More Important Than Ever for Entrepreneurs and CEOs
With money comes responsibility. In a world where more than three million children under the age of five die every year because of malnutrition, there isn’t an excuse not to help if you have the ability. Food drives, donations, fundraisers — they’re fast ways people aid each other during hard times in their communities.

When you consider that some of the country’s top CEOs earn 300 times more than the average employee, there’s no doubt the greater social responsibility lies with those who are fortunate enough to earn in the one percent. CEOs like Bill Gates have famously paved the way and proven why philanthropy is an important part of not just the job but also your life. And there’s no better time to make a difference.

Whether monetarily or through innovation, today’s CEOs and entrepreneurs understand they possess a philanthropic power to nourish, nurture and educate. Not only does it paint a picture of what your company stands for and who you are as a human being, but it can also impact your bottom line and how you’re perceived.

It’s Important For Discovering New Technologies

There’s no doubt corporate philanthropy is changing, with more CEOs and entrepreneurs embracing the influential roles they’re in and creating new ways of investing into society. In fact, many of today’s CEOs and entrepreneurs believe in developing a “social impact portfolio” that showcases their company’s desire to respond to the local community’s needs and aligns its philanthropic programs with the interests of the business. Additionally, corporate leaders are now taking part in catalytic philanthropy, which supports initiatives that drive large-scale change.

Example: CEO Elon Musk’s foundation donates millions to areas of research dedicated to human space exploration. SpaceX, which is one of his many ambitious projects, aims to create a civilization in space that helps sustain Earth’s resources.

It’s Important For Attracting Top Young Talent

A study by the Society for Human Resource Management found that 94 percent of Millennials want to use their skills to benefit a good cause, with 39 percent researching a company’s community involvement before interviewing for a job.

With CEOs and entrepreneurs hoping to put the best and the brightest together on the same team, having a reputation for innovation isn’t good enough anymore. Your company’s mission statement should somehow reflect your dedication to donating.

It’s Important For Generating a High Return On Investment

CEOs and entrepreneurs are starting to understand the value of investing in their philanthropic infrastructure to improve their company’s financial position. The potential for a high ROI can be almost as rewarding as the feeling you get when you realize how much an impact one of your philanthropic projects has left.

According to estimates, philanthropy generates about $3.50 for every dollar invested. And every dollar your company generates via philanthropy takes less effort, resources and space to produce than other operational revenue streams.

It’s Important For Humanity and Our Survival

The World Food Programme calculates that it would cost an estimated $3.2 billion annually to feed all 66 million hungry children around the world. With an estimated 15 million millionaires in it, it would cost each a little more than $200 per year to feed every starving kid. Of course, that’s an impossible standard to set, but what is possible is for CEOs and entrepreneurs to use their fortunes and their minds to ensure that there aren’t any hungry kids in the future.

It’s up to each of us to make a positive difference in our community. With the philanthropic power that CEOs and entrepreneurs have today, it’s up to them to invest in the future of our planet and change it for the better.

Chris Burch is a venture capitalist, and his investment portfolio includes Bauble Bar and Nihiwatu via Burch Creative Capital.