Rachel Hutchisson has spent more than 20 years working at the intersection of business and social good.
Blackbaud is a technology company that powers the social good community. Rachel Hutchison is Blackbaud’s VP, Corporate Citizenship & Philanthropy, and a thought leader on corporate social responsibility. Rachel believes that “Good is for everyone.” She teaches companies to embrace what she calls Human Social Responsibility, putting people at the center of their strategies.
Rachel was born into a family of college professors. “My grandfather, father, aunts, and uncles were all professors…and my mother was a teacher,” she describes. “That meant I also grew up around a lot of books, conversations, and ideas.”
When Rachel was five years old, her family moved to England. She points to this as “hugely formative for me and my sisters.” Rachel’s family traveled throughout Europe, camping along the way, and seeing the world as it was in the 1970s. Remember that this was during the cold war with hardened borders, different currencies in each country, and widely varying food and ideas. She says of this time, “At a very young age, I knew there was much to see of the world and that we weren’t all the same.”
Rachel learned about social responsibility at an early age. “I didn’t know it then, but I realize looking back that I was raised in a household that believed in giving back,” she explains. “It’s less that we talked about it and more that my parents simply modeled it. Both of my parents were active on nonprofit boards (although I didn’t know the word nonprofit then) – the Literacy Council, the public library, the senior citizen’s center. And I knew they gave charitable contributions to those organizations and the colleges they attended. We didn’t have a lot of money, but that didn’t get in the way of supporting causes that were important.”
Over time, Rachel developed a sense of personal mission. “I am fundamentally bothered by the lack of equity in our world – whether you are looking at this through a gender lens or a racial lens or another lens entirely.”
Merging Purpose with Career
Rachel joined Blackbaud more than 20 years ago. Blackbaud is a publicly-traded, cloud-based technology company offering technology, data, and expertise that powers social good people and organizations. When Rachel joined Blackbaud when there were 100 employees. Today, they have over 3,300. Blackbaud works with about 40,000 organizations around the world. Rachel says of Blackbaud, “We are a shared value company with economic and societal benefit combined at our core.”
Rachel grew Blackbaud’s Corporate Social Responsibility from the ground, up. She had developed a model known as Human Social Responsibility. She recently wrote about Human Social Responsibility in the whitepaper, CSR 2020: Experts Look Ahead.
Social Entrepreneur Quotes by Rachel Hutchisson“Something I’m passionate about is Human Social Responsibility.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud #CSR #business #leadership Click To Tweet “I believe the future of CSR is a shift in how we think about it, from focusing on the needs of the corporate to focusing on the needs of the people in the company.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud #humancentered #csr Click To Tweet “72% of people who work for a business in America work for small to mid-size businesses.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud #SME #smallbiz #business Click To Tweet “All the resources in the market that were available to me were for the really, really big guys.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud #corporateresponsibility #goodbiz #BeTheChange Click To Tweet “There are enough issues in the world that we need everybody at the table.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud #sustainability #globalgoals #innovation Click To Tweet “People today bring their whole selves to work.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud #engagement #leadership #workplace Click To Tweet “More people are saying; you should recognize who I am, not just what I do.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud #talent #leadership #engagement Click To Tweet “We want to give them what I call voice and choice in engaging them.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud #inclusion #employeeengagement #CSR Click To Tweet “This is all about organizational health.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud #work #leadership #teams Click To Tweet “You need to make sure that whatever you’re doing as a business, the organization is healthy.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud Click To Tweet “We have an economic benefit and societal benefit tied together at the core of our business strategy.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud #sharedvalue #SVLeaders #SVInvest Click To Tweet “A company isn’t just a building on a piece of land. It’s a robust part of a community.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud #giveback #CSR #SocialGood Click To Tweet “There’s a very hard cost to turnover.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud #leadership #hiring #business Click To Tweet “We now have costs that you can tie to turnover.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud #diversity #engagement #inclusion Click To Tweet “86% of them said it mattered to them when they joined the company that we did the work that we did. They made an intentional choice to be here.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud #talent Click To Tweet “Your employees are individual people with choice.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud Click To Tweet “This is a discussion that’s happening in the broad-based business press.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud #sharedvalue #CSR #socialgood Click To Tweet “When I graduated from college, it was the Gordon Gekko ‘greed is good’ era.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud Click To Tweet “I love that these different sectors are coming closer together instead of being pushed apart.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud Click To Tweet “It’s not just for the big guys.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud #CSR #sharedvalue #sustainability Click To Tweet “You just start with your own community.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud Click To Tweet “That’s what this is all about. Understanding your community - understanding the needs of your community.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud Click To Tweet “There’s not some magic resource that says, ‘this is how you do it.’” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud #CSR Click To Tweet “Some CSR departments feel like they’re down the street and around the corner from the actual company.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud Click To Tweet “I have a philosophy that good is for everyone.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud #BeTheChange #SocEnt #socialgood Click To Tweet “Anyone can be an agent of good.” @RachelHutchssn @blackbaud Click To Tweet
Social Entrepreneurship Resources:
- White Paper: CSR 2020: Experts Look Ahead: http://foundations.blackbaud.com/white-papers/csr-2020-experts-look-ahead
- Rachel’s TEDx Talk: https://youtu.be/N8dXNzCIVxg
- Blackbaud: https://www.blackbaud.com
- Blackbaud on Twitter: https://twitter.com/blackbaud
- Blackbaud on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/blackbaud
- Book: Crazy Good Advice: 10 Lessons Learned from 150 Leading Social Entrepreneurs: https://tonyloyd.com/book