How often have you seen government and local government consult with communities, and you just 'know' they're consulting because they have to, and they've already made the decision?
Frustrating when you have what you believe is great input into something you care about. But, apparently, they don't care at all about what you might think. They just want to get on with the job.
I've seen great examples of community engagement and consultation. I've seen times too, when it's been a tick-box exercise, where the community's opinion is sought in order to meet legislative requirements, quiet any critics, feed them a sop and hope they go away.
Well, it's not only government that needs to think about engaging with the community. Businesses large and small operate in the community. What they do affects the people around them, as well as those who work with them and for them.
Mostly, when a company wants to do something that might affect the community, they take the decision, then implement it. Then, when the community comes out in an uproar because they don't like it, the company's surprised. Well doh . . . . those same people who made that decision are probably the same ones who groan and moan about the latest council decision they didn't know about till after the event.
Effective engagement with a community about an issue that affects them will help your business in many ways. For instance, it can reduce the number of appeals through the legal system, it can avoid negative publicity, and most of all, it can actually enhance your reputation and relationships with your communities