Although in business, a big focus is always on how much money is coming into the company, charity work and donations have become a hot topic in recent years, from companies donating all of the bonuses from the top-paid executives to businesses donating hours of work and encouraging their employees to do the same. CEOs are proving that although only rules business, the heart does as well.
Direct from former Polycom CEO Andrew Miller, here are some highlights of CEOs who have put in real effort to help others.
Andrew Miller Foundation
Miller’s Andrew Miller Foundation aims to raise attention to smaller charities and foundations currently under the radar. This foundation allows a platform for deserving and underserved individuals who strive to earn and learn more. Although this is a relatively new foundation, all of the work has proven itself fruitful and useful, with many charities benefitting from the attention.
An immigrant to the United States from Turkey, Ulukaya has spent the last thirty years making a name for himself in the dairy industry. Starting with cheeses and moving over to yogurt, creating a billion dollar company, he’s worked hard to make a place for himself in his second home. Remembering his humble beginnings, Ulukaya is always sure to donate as much as possible to other refugee and immigrant groups so that others wanting to make a fresh start have the chance to.
Sarah Blakely: Spanx
Although many may not think of shaping undergarments as woman-forward or feminist, Sarah Blakely has turned that assumption on its head. As the first woman to join the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to pledge half of her money to charities, she’s chosen to focus her wealth on helping other women. Blakely focuses on charities and foundations that work to further women’s rights to employment and personal freedoms.
Ursula Burns: Xerox
As the first black woman to run a Fortune-500 company, Burns understands the importance of getting a fair chance to succeed. She’s used her platform to work with others like former president Barack Obama to build initiatives for minorities to work in business sectors that previously weren’t available. Burns aims to allow women and minorities the rights that all people deserve and more equality in the workplace.
Nial Blumenthal: Warby Parker
Inspired by his grandfather’s work, this entrepreneur works to ensure that no child who needs glasses has to go without. Offering a buy one give one deal, Blumenthal ensures that his company will reach out and provide a child in need gets a couple of their own for every pair of glasses sold. Although this deal has come under some scrutiny recently, it’s still generally regarded as a fantastic thing to offer.
Most people will more than likely keep their biases about businesses and overlook what good is going on. Although some may argue about the theatrics of announcing charitable donations and actions, a good action is good regardless. These businesses and their CEOs should be cheered on for taking steps towards making our world a better place to live.
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