The Word is Out
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Businesses create jobs – some are good and some are not. The Hitachi Foundation has been on a mission to discover businesses that provide good jobs with pathways to the middle class. Our efforts were rewarded. Through nearly ninety case studies and survey data, we've been able to understand what happens at the intersection of people and profit, and why some business leaders view good jobs and investments in their workers as a precondition for building a great company. While the insights we gained have been beneficial to other business leaders, we have been pleased by the interest from policymakers. The Federal Reserve in particular, as they attempt to address persistently high levels of unemployment and labor-force detachment, has invited us in for briefings throughout the system. Two such briefings occurred last month.
Barbara Dyer spoke with The Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond Community Investment Council about the changing nature of work in America. Supported by survey research jointly sponsored by the Joyce and Hitachi foundations, Dyer focused on the attitudes of lower-wage earners toward their jobs and the practices of their employers. The Community Investment Council is convened by Jeffrey M. Lacker, President of the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond and is composed of civic and business leaders throughout the Bank's region, including Virginia, West Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Maryland and DC. The Council informs the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond about current issues facing communities – specifically on matters related to jobs and economic growth.
In Demand: Our Yoshiyama Entrepreneur Team
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As grantmakers running an entrepreneurship program, our Yoshiyama Young Entrepreneur program officers have developed expertise that is in demand in both philanthropic and business communities. Within the past month, this program team has been asked to speak on philanthropic panels and within business school classrooms. Here is a snapshot of their most recent speaking engagements:
Jenny Harms attended the Duke MBA Weekend for Women - a recruiting event for prospective female MBA students and an opportunity for alumni to connect with current and prospective students. "In business schools nationwide and in the upper ranks of corporate America, women are underrepresented," said Jenny, "The Fuqua School of Business knows it's time for a change. As a leader in business education, Duke is dedicated to building a diverse learning community that affords each woman the opportunity to reach her highest potential." Jenny also spoke to students in Cathy Clark's Impact Investing class on why it's important to work with entrepreneurs and investors in order to create and grow a more cohesive impact economy.
Young Entrepreneurs Featured in Guardian Story on Social Enterprise
What do sustainable partyware, fish fertilizer, and a healthcare app have in common? They were all recently featured in a story on sustainable business and social enterprise in the US Guardian. They also happen to be 2013 Yoshiyama Young Entrepreneurs. Susty Party, Symbiotic Aquaponic LLC, and Anjna Patient Education were featured prominently in this story by Ucilia Wang.
Highlights from the article include:
Hitachi is one of many organizations that promote social entrepreneurship, which makes creating social change a central part of a business plan. It's a term that has come in vogue over the past decade, stemming from the idea that employing business savvy to solve social problems might be more effective than relying on the government (where social programs are often targets in budget cuts) or traditional nonprofits alone.
"As the gap between the rich and the poor grows wider, we are eager to see the talent and energy devoted to these issues in the United States," said Barbara Dyer, CEO of the foundation. "We are particularly interested in businesses that are creating social benefits while they are creating economic benefits."
For access to the full article, visit: Winning ideas: a healthcare app, grass-fiber partyware and fish fertilizer
Sherry Salway Black Named Distinguished Alumni at ESU
Sherry Salway Black, one of our valued Board members, was recently presented with the Distinguished Alumni Award from East Stroudsburg University. The Award recognizes alumni for outstanding professional and community service achievements. "I am so honored to be recongized by ESU for my work. All of the work that I've been involved with over the years has been motivated by passion," said Sherry, "And I'm deeply passionate about my involvement with organizations like the Hitachi Foundation, the National Congress of American Indians, and the President's Advisory Council."
Sherry has been a longstanding member of The Hitachi Foundation Board of Directors and we are grateful for her years of service on the Foundation Board. Congratulations, Sherry!
Sherry Salway Black joined the staff of the National Congress of American Indians as director of the Partnership for Tribal Governance initiative in May 2009. Her previous work experience includes 19 years as senior vice president of, and on the boards of directors for, First Nations Development Institute and First Nations Oweesta Corporation. Black recently served on the President's Advisory Council on Financial Capability whose purpose is to assist the American people in securing financial stability. She also serves on the Board of Trustees for the National Indian Child Welfare Association, the Advisory Committee for the National Congress of American Indians' Policy Research Center, the Board of Governors for the Honoring Excellence in the Governance of Tribal Nations program at Harvard University and on an advisory committee for the Indian Land Capital Company.
Black has a Master's of Business Administration degree from the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. She is Oglala Lakota and is originally from Pine Ridge, S.D.
The announcement for the award can be found here: East Stroudsburg University Distinguished Alumni Award
Photo Credit: Brooke Donovan (@BrookeFDonovan)
Meet the 2013 Yoshiyama Young Entrepreneurs
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Young Entrepreneurs Honored For Innovative Business Approaches to Social and Environmental Challenges
WASHINGTON, DC October 22, 2013 - The Hitachi Foundation is honoring eight entrepreneurs from five enterprises that address some of society's most persistent challenges. Now in its fourth year, the Yoshiyama Young Entrepreneurs Program recognizes leaders operating viable businesses that fill needs in the market while creating social value and tangible opportunities for low-wealth Americans.
The awards support businesses whose innovations tackle critical issues such as poverty, sustainability, education, community health, and workforce practices. In addition to a $40,000 grant, these entrepreneurs will receive business mentoring and access to a network of peers and advisers through the Foundation and partner organizations Investors' Circle and B Lab. These 8 entrepreneurs join 21 Yoshiyama Entrepreneurs from 16 businesses - growing the numbers that have found profit and social purpose to be mutually reinforcing.
"While all businesses face their own unique set of challenges and difficult decisions, the Yoshiyama Entrepreneurs have one thing in common – their business models are about creating both economic and social value," said Barbara Dyer, President and CEO of The Hitachi Foundation, "This dual purpose adds a layer of complexity to managing and growing these enterprises. But for our entrepreneurs, this is the only approach they've ever considered. For them, this is what it means to run a business."
To see the announcement on our website, visit: Meet our Entrepreneurs
Innovative Employers are Generating Great Jobs and Profits
WASHINGTON, DC, September 5, 2013 – In the wake of years of under-employment and wage stagnation, a new report from The Hitachi Foundation identifies the policies and practices that are empowering businesses to boost competitiveness, while also improving wages, service, employee loyalty, and profits. Doing Well and Doing Good challenges assumptions that tough times inherently require cutting jobs and wages as a means to stay afloat.
For access to the full report, visit: Doing Well and Doing Good
The healthcare and manufacturing companies profiled in Doing Well and Doing Good help workers gain skills, retain their jobs, advance, and generate greater value. Those improvements resulted in higher profits, increased productivity, greater opportunities for workers, and (in the case of healthcare) better patient outcomes. Manufacturing firms grew in revenues and total employment.
Three innovation areas were critical to these improvements: human capital, products or services, and production or service delivery methods. The 14 profiled companies (selected from a diverse mix of 90 firms with similar approaches) achieved the largest gains for themselves, their workers, and shareholders by innovating in all three categories. Profiled companies with highly effective "doing well/good" policies include:
- NatureBake (Oregon) increased sales 1000% over seven years.
- GR Spring & Stamping (Michigan), despite automotive sector crises, increased sales 300% over the past decade with 29% annual growth since 2009. Employee turnover is 40% below industry average.
- Good Samaritan Hospital's (New York) training/advancement programs generated wage gains of 22-100% for new nurses trained from among existing lower-level staff. Their nurse vacancies were slashed in half with $3 million annually in associated savings.
- NewAge Industries (Pennsylvania), despite sharp downturns in the industrial tubing market, has an 8 year string of record breaking revenues and maintained profits. While competitor stock prices dropped sharply, NewAge employee stock ownership shares soared by 200%. Most workers, including those in frontline production, earn over $40,000.
"The future of the American economy will be shaped by business innovations that challenge conventional wisdom," says Barbara Dyer, the Foundation's President and CEO,"These industry leaders do just that by investing in their workers because doing so generates major financial and strategic returns for the long-term."
According to Ray Leathers, President of Roll Forming Corporation, a company highlighted in the report, "Incentives for our employees like pay-for-skills, gain sharing, and bonuses for continuous-improvement were integral to our expansion and profitability. Our workers now take ownership in the production process, which has allowed us to penetrate new markets."
Hitachi Foundation Announces Young Entrepreneur Award
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Hitachi Foundation Announces Young Entrepreneur Award
Yoshiyama Young Entrepreneur award provides $40,000 and technical assistance to business leaders who are making a difference in the U.S.
WASHINGTON, DC – The Hitachi Foundation has opened the application process for its 2013 Yoshiyama Young Entrepreneur Award. Up to five young entrepreneurs intent on building sustainable businesses and making a difference in the United States will receive $40,000, as well as tools and training to be successful. Applications are due March 28th and can be found at http://www.hitachifoundation.org/our-work/yoshiyama-young-entrepreneurs-program.
Young Entrepreneurs Chart Business Approaches to Alleviate Poverty Creating Tangible Opportunities for Low-wealth Americans
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WASHINGTON, DC (October 23, 2012) – The Hitachi Foundation is honoring five business leaders from four enterprises with the Yoshiyama Young Entrepreneurs award. Now in its third year, the competitive program recognizes America’s newest generation of entrepreneurs whose businesses are about making a living and making a difference.
Whether they are supporting and placing welfare-to-work candidates in South Florida; creating learning laboratories for building energy-efficient affordable housing across the U.S.; revitalizing rural farming in the Ozarks; or infusing economic vitality and self-employment opportunities in Chicago’s “food deserts,” these young entrepreneurs combine their passion to make a difference with business acumen to achieve purpose in the pursuit of profit.
The Foundation is committed to discovering and spreading powerful yet practical approaches that illuminate the role of business as a partner in strengthening society. The Foundation starts by finding young business leaders between ages 18 and 30 who are leading the way to future business and societal opportunities — those succeeding at finding unexpected solutions to persistent, structural social challenges by using the tools of business to make a positive social impact. In addition to a $40,000 grant, Awardees receive leadership development, business mentoring, technical assistance and access to a network of peers and advisers from partner organizations — including Investors' Circle, Social Venture Network, B Lab, and PICnet.
Training For The Future of Healthcare
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With a training session for clinical care leaders in Los Angeles last week, we’ve now completed four such sessions, training a total of 170 clinical care leaders on new practices that improve health outcomes while reducing costs. See here for a detailed overview of the first session in Philadelphia, courtesy of the 1199C Training and Upgrading Fund there.
These training sessions, which previously took place in Philadelphia, Hartford, and Portland (OR), are part of our Pioneer Employers activities. They demonstrate the traction that our work has generated over the last two years.
More importantly, they show how – in collaboration with the Center for the Health Professions at UCSF – we can make progress on an issue of vital public concern. As experts across the political spectrum agree, rising health care costs threaten to bankrupt families, doctors and other providers, large and small businesses, and government at all levels. Thus, we must find ways to slow the growth in costs without sacrificing quality.
Hitachi Foundation Joins Billion + Change at White House
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The Hitachi Foundation Joins A Billion + Change to Connect to the Future of Corporate Service
Can you imagine a future where 500 companies decide to collectively lead social change and tackle the most pressing challenges of the 21st century through skills-based volunteer service? Where thousands of communities tap into the skills and talents of businesses to address social needs? Where millions of employees grow professionally while championing causes they believe in? Or where companies pledge billions of dollars in corporate service to address the most complex challenges facing our country?