The Benefits of Peer Learning and Virtual Networking

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Those who are able to work remotely during COVID-19’s period of physical distancing may already be realizing the value of social and professional interactions with coworkers--even if only on computer screens. Beyond the connection these meetups provide, there is more business value to be had. 

While, ordinarily, we network in a variety of contexts—at events, conferences, community meetings, courses—given the complexities of our present environment, many of us are looking for new, meaningful methods to stay connected. The Center’s BCCCC Online Member Community offers Center members a chance to participate in cross-company peer sharing and learning. Because the BCCCC Online Member Community is comprised solely of BCCCC members, conversations are candid and specific—including the sharing of strategic plans and partnership information.

To augment the dynamic discussions going on within our Online Member Community, the Center will host live BCCCC Member Meetups during the weeks of April 13 and April 20. Open only to Center members, these meetups—hosted on Zoom—will explore topics that are top-of-mind for members right now.  

Sign up for any one of our BCCCC Member Meetups to hear from your peers and ask questions on the following topics: Disaster relief/employee crises fundsVirtual Volunteering & Employee Supportand Changing your grant making focus and easing grant restrictionsIn the future, we plan to hold Meetups on additional topics, exploring issues such as future of CSR, sustainability reporting, environmental performance, and more. Leading up to these video-hosted forums, we encourage you to also join our Online Member Community, where you can contribute to existing threads, pose your own questions, and position yourself at the center of our vibrant virtual network. Think of this as a way to solve your problems and feed your creativity. Research suggests that, though creativity is often discussed as an inherent personal trait, there are organizational practices that can promote creativity among team members. 

As corporate citizenship professionals know well, having many relationships with a variety of types of people, and being positioned at the center of a network (as opposed to on its periphery) has a significant effect on individual creativity.[1] Being a connector in our now virtual networks is a valuable skill in our new normal, both in facilitating connections between members of a team, and in connecting teams with those they are working to serve and support. 

 

[1] Perry-Smith, J. (2006). Social Yet Creative: The Role of Social Relationships in Facilitating Individual Creativity. Academy of Management Journal 49(1) 85-101.