Jack Bonner has long been an advocate of corporate advocacies. He has firsthand experience as a third-party advocacy expert. He is very aware that more business owners and customers are looking for opportunities to be more charitable and help a cause they care about. Entrepreneurship isn’t about selling things; it’s about finding innovative ways to improve people’s lives. Jack Bonner discovered that until recently, most people in business focused on products and services that would appeal to consumers, and this resulted in the creation of many great companies and a lot of jobs. But attitudes are changing. A new generation of entrepreneurs is using approaches from the commercial world and employing technology to tackle social and environmental problems. These areas used to be the exclusive territory of government agencies and charitable organizations.
Entrepreneurs with civic and social engagement can solve the social and global challenges we face. Social entrepreneurship can turn passion into profit. Brands like TOMS Shoes and Warby Parker have combined fashion and social good to create a major niche foothold in their industry. TOMS gives away one pair of shoes; Warby Parker gives one pair of glasses to someone in need for every purchase you make. With this initiative, they are making a major impact on easing the lack of glasses and footwear in other countries and sharing those good feelings of charity with their customers. Entrepreneurs today have more freedom and courage to help social causes by building profitable businesses that give back to their communities.
Another unique aspect of entrepreneurship that is tied to social causes is the financial windfall that can come from getting acquired or having your company meet great success you never thought possible. Because many entrepreneurs are making more money now than many people thought was even possible 50 years ago, there is more to go around when it comes to committing funds to non-profit organizations. This frees up entrepreneurs to spend more money on causes they are passionate about. The higher visibility of social causes through the Internet has inspired these billionaires and other successful entrepreneurs around the world to make a significant impact globally. And you don’t even need to be an entrepreneur to give to a global cause that has ties with entrepreneurship. There are websites that allow anyone to give a micro-loan to a business owner or entrepreneur in a developing country.
Like every other American, Jack Bonner was ready to vote for their next president this past November. For those who doesn’t understand how your vote counts, Jack Bonner is here to explain how the American electoral system works. This is great information to be aware of so we can educate the next generation on how it works. It also gives others a glimpse of our political systems in the most important election for our country.
An election for President of the United States occurs every four years on Election Day, held the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November. The 2016 Presidential election was held on November 8. The election process begins with the primary elections and caucuses and moves to nomination conventions, during which each political party selects a nominee. The nominee also announces a Vice Presidential running mate at this time. The candidates then campaign across the country to explain their views and plans to voters and participate in debates with candidates from other parties.
During the general election, Americans head to the polls to cast their vote for President. But the tally of those votes—the popular vote—does not determine the winner. Unlike in other U.S. elections, the President and Vice President are not elected directly by the people. Instead, they’re chosen by “electors” through a process called the Electoral College. The idea of using electors is based on the Constitution. The nation’s founders saw it as a compromise between electing the President by a popular vote among citizens and electing the President in Congress.
To win the election, a candidate must receive a majority of the electoral votes. In the event no candidate receives the majority, the House of Representatives chooses the President and the Senate chooses the Vice President. In the rare event that no candidate gets the needed 270 electoral votes, the decision would go to the House of Representatives, who would vote to elect the new President from among the top three candidates. A similar process would take place in the Senate to elect the Vice President from among the top two candidates. Once the President and Vice president have been decided, it’s time to inaugurate the newly elected officials. The Vice-President-elect is sworn in first, and repeats the oath of office in use since 1884. Around noon, the President-elect is sworn in and recites the oath in accordance with the U.S. Constitution.
More than anyone, Jack Bonner knows that corporations have now learned and more than ever practicing advocacy, both from internal scources-workers, vendors, shareholders to outside third parties such as community and civic groups.t. Companies are now involved in a lot of socio-political issues and are not afraid to show their support for their chosen advocacy. Studies show that Americans are more likely to purchase from a company that shares their opinions on social issues and are less likely to purchase from a company that doesn’t. In other words, it’s no longer just about whether a person likes the product or service, it’s about whether they like the company’s stance on certain relevant issues.
To get their point across, companies use advocacy advertising to present paid messages in support of a particular social, environmental, or political cause. While companies often promote causes of interest to company owners, leaders, and employees, the common purpose of this approach is to support causes that help the business and to appeal to potential customers who believe in the cause. Jack Bonner discusses his picks on some great corporate advocacy examples.
A popular example of corporate advocacy is Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz, whose support for same-sex marriage was translated into a core element of Starbucks’ business culture. When Starbucks announced its support for Washington’s state’s referendum supporting same-sex marriage, the National Organization for Marriage urged for a boycott of the coffee chain. A shareholder even complained that that the company had lost customers because of its support for gay marriage. Howard Schultz was not even fazed; he stressed that it was about respecting diversity, not the bottom line. He responded by saying that not every decision is an economic decision and that the company even experienced a 38% shareholder return when they supported same-sex marriage. He then concluded to the complaining shareholder, and I quote, “If you feel, respectfully, that you can get a higher return than the 38% you got last year, it’s a free country. You can sell your shares in Starbucks and buy shares in another company. Thank you very much.” This led to cheers and applause from everyone present.
Another great example is Diet Coke’s Red Dress Online initiative. The awareness campaign was aimed at drawing attention to women’s heart disease. It was a collaboration with Heart Truth and emphasized that heart disease is the No. 1 killer of women. Along with name recognition in support of a good cause, Diet Coke stands out as a product intended to provide a “better” nutritional alternative for pop drinkers.
Whatever advocacy your company decides to support, make sure that it is in line with your company’s core values and that the cause is something the whole company—including owners, stakeholders, and employees—can get behind It will be difficult to launch a campaign that your own employees don’t believe in. Take the time to study the different advocacies out there and decide what you want to support. It is best to have a written set of parameters and a defined process to decide which issues your company will pursue and what your position will be.
What is missed in most political polling? What should you look for so you know the poll will be accurate?
As we enter this historically turbulent Presidential election, many of us are bombarded by a continual stream of polls.
Polls of the Presidential race saturate the front pages of major newspapers, major news feeds, TV and the social media.
How much faith should we put into their reported results? This is easy and quick to determine simply by looking for two questions to be answered by any particular poll:
First question: Who exactly is the polling firm asking questions of? And wow is this an important point!
Are the folks being polled:
People who say they are going to vote
People who say they are registered voters
Or are they:
People who are called by the polling firm from a list of registered voters
People the polling firm has gotten from a publically available list of actual voters in the last two elections
Bottom line: Is the polling firm “trusting” or “verifying”?
Yes, it is more expensive for the polling firm to go to the extra steps of verifying, but it makes a giant difference.
Second question: Is the polling posing the real choice?
The real choice is not just Trump vs. Hillary. The choice in all 50 states is, in fact, at least three candidates: Trump vs Hillary vs Johnson. Gary Johnson of Libertarian Party is on the ballot in all 50 states, and at the moment, when included in the polling question, pulls 8-10% of the vote.
But wait; there is a fourth person who will likely be on most, but not all ballots: Jill Stein of the Green Party.
In sum, always look closely for who exactly is being polled and are all of the actual ballot choices being polled.