Philanthropy is Part of a Good Business Model

As a business development professional, I have a focus and drive to be a change agent and thus grow revenue. I am hyper-focused on giving back to our community and world. The No. 1 reason for “giving back” should be because it is the right thing to do. Helping an individual or an organization by providing time, talent, and/or monetary contributions comes from the heart, first and foremost.

It is second nature to American businesspeople to help others. Lending support, whether it involves sitting on the board of a charitable organization, writing a check each month to a favorite cause or putting your sweat and muscle toward a worthy physical project, is the successful entrepreneur’s way of sharing his or her wealth with others. Such altruistic endeavors have helped to build hospitals, educate underprivileged children, and ensure that the less fortunate get the nourishment and medical attention they need and deserve.

Along with a feeling of accomplishment, these actions bring an unexpected benefit, one that is not often discussed for fear of sounding self-serving: Philanthropy reinforces business success. By extending time and talent outside the office, an entrepreneur reveals his or her personal and professional integrity, underscores his or her skills, and illustrates a commitment not just to an individual business but to the community and the greater good.

As the managing director of business development and partner of BlueBridge Networks, a Cleveland-based data-center business, I have consciously chosen to grow our standing in the community, with complete buy-in from the shareholders, by formulating a model of giving.

In a web- and data-centric world, data-center service providers today are no less trusted advisors than one’s own attorneys, clergy, doctors, and accountants. If you are down and out, you will be just that. We learned that the values of passion, stewardship, dedication, and efficacy resonate. The day-to-day repetition confirms and intensifies the ability to provide unparalleled service. We provide that world-class service day after day because the customer wants and deserves it, and we are just the company to provide it. This is demonstrated, proven, and forged not only by our operational excellence in our field but also by our active participation in our community and our world in many areas — education, innovation, and research to name a few.

Companies are beginning to inspect what they expect from a data-center provider. Rightfully so, we are beginning to see a trend in which technology practitioners are leading the charge in procuring IT solutions. Due-diligences in the selection of strategic partners for data-center services are a refreshing direction. In years past, good marketing, as opposed to operational excellence standards, drove revenue. Today it’s about uptime, high availability, reliability, security, and exceptionality. No longer will a data center thrive in a category of over-promising and under-delivering. Simply put, people must trust a company with its lifeblood — its data. BlueBridge creates and builds on a trusted partnership based on mutual respect and like-minded business strategies. BlueBridge is the steward of a company’s lifeblood — its IT infrastructure.

In terms of the cloud, BBN invested in and launched multiple platforms that make sense for different levels of objectives and size of organizations. Our team is very astute at listening to customers and helping right-size IT solutions. Because we design, build, sell and service, we are more focused on what is the best solution for the customer rather than pigeonholing them into a canned solution. We can help companies focused in capex vs. opex, as well as those whose focus on outsourcing vs. those who want to maintain complete control. BlueBridge’s customer-first approach resonates well with its customers and their IT teams. When the rubber hits the road, our team is there for them, whether it’s a need for cabling or a 3 a.m. onsite problem. Customers inform us that they recognize that they are not just a number with BlueBridge; we are a big part of what their organization is all about. By working together to solve the issues of a company, BlueBridge and its customers form a powerful and highly efficient team. Our fast and knowledgeable team acts as an extension of their staff. We are flexible and nimble. We are a trusted partner, as we have cultivated a culture of giving.

Link to CBC Magazine: