Jessica James Consulting

Connecting Corporations & Communities

What we do

We connect companies and communities - aligning values and matching a company's skills with the needs of the community. We enable you to discover, develop and leverage your brand's community identity to deepen connections with potential and current employees, customers and stakeholders.

Re-Think "CSR"

  • True Corporate Social Responsibility goes beyond writing a check or doing a day of service - it must be integrated into your core business to make a lasting impact.
  • Being an engaged and responsible company means tapping into your employees' skills, passions and interests - not just relying on one person's philosophy or favorite cause.
  • Responsibility isn’t a skill set that you hire for, it's a value you nurture.
  • When done right, non-profit partners "give back" to their corporate partners as much as the corporations give to them.

Why we do it

Why does this matter to my company?

— Because it matters to your most important constituencies:

  • Potential employees
    80% of millennials want to work for a company that contributes to society
  • Current employees
    CSR is the 3rd most important driver of employee engagement overall
  • Customers
    92% of consumers have a more positive image of companies/products that support causes
  • Investors
    78% of shareholders who rate a company’s philanthropy favorably will continue to invest

— Because companies have a unique opportunity to improve their communities and the lives of individuals within those communities.

Why we are positioned to help

— Hiring an external, apolitical facilitator allows everyone to share the responsibility of being responsible. You do not need a large firm or team, you need one person who you and your employees trust to guide the conversation. In order to trust this person, they must have:

  • Extensive expertise in building sustainable, mutually beneficial partnerships between non-profits and for-profits
  • A portfolio of vetted non-profits with which to partner
  • The ability to facilitate small group conversations and large collaborative events with both sides
  • The time, energy and ability to dedicate to your initiatives

How we do it

Customized to your company's core competencies, business model and existing community engagement platform, we develop a process and timeline to meet your needs. While specific objectives may vary, our ultimate goals are to uncover and leverage a new layer of your brand's identity; make a lasting difference in the community by using your team's essential skills and your brand's unique value; and communicate your community involvement to stakeholders in a compelling and integrated way.

The three part strategy below is the most effective process for achieving those results in a discrete amount of time.

Engagement Overview

Value Exploration

Conducting deep, qualitative exploration with representative, pre-selected staff to explore:

  • What common values do you as a team share?
  • What unique skills can you offer the community, and how would you like to see these expressed?

Volunteer Engagement

Distill themes, determine strategy, and broker non-profit partnership that connects aspirations with meaningful collaboration:

  • Which partners meet the needs of employees and best fits your brand’s narrative?
  • What is the structure of your ideal volunteer partnership?

Communication Strategy

Promoting the process and the results:

  • What story does this tell about your brand and identity?
  • How can we communicate this story to your internal and external stakeholders?

Timelines & Deliverables

Value Exploration

  • Kickoff meeting with stakeholders
  • Development of qualitative discussion guide for staff
  • Ten one on one qualitative immersion sessions with staff
  • Distillation of findings and presentation to key leadership
Timeline: 3 months

Volunteer Engagement

Distill themes, determine strategy, and broker non-profit partnership to connect aspirations to meaningful collaboration:

  • Review of digital portfolio of vetted NPOs
  • Connecting themes to opportunities
  • Brokerage of non-profit partnership and blueprint of volunteer strategy
  • Training of staff and execution of initial volunteer event
Timeline: 3-4 months

Communication Strategy

Promoting the process and the results:

  • Co-creation of story and PR push
  • Recommendations to sustain corporate volunteer identity into the future
Timeline: 2-3 months

Who is Jessica?

Jessica James profile photo

With nearly a decade of experience building meaningful and sustainable partnerships between non-profits and corporations, Jessica has led over 100 corporate engagement events and programs, connecting thousands of employees from the finance, media, beauty, fashion and technology spaces to clients from NYC's largest non-profits.

Most recently, Jessica launched Young Women's Leadership Network's corporate and volunteer engagement program and built Grace Institute's first development department, which is successful due largely to the strength of corporate partnerships. She has been the catalyst for countless moments of magic, meaning and mutual benefit for corporations and communities.

Jessica has a vast range of experience and expertise within the non-profit space, having raised funds for Safe Horizon and Inwood House, in addition to the Obama for America Tri-State Finance Office in 2008. Jessica has a Masters in Social Work from Columbia University and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Southern California.

Jessica has brokered mutually beneficial partnerships between non-profits and the following companies:

  • Fashion/Beauty

    • Brooks Brothers
    • Coach
    • Dermalogica
    • Estee Lauder Companies
    • Lily Pulitzer
    • Ralph Lauren
    • Worth
  • Finance

    • Citi
    • Goldman Sachs
    • Morgan Stanley
  • Investment/Private Equity

    • American Securities
    • Blackstone
    • Capital Group
    • Guggenheim Partners
    • Napier Park
  • Insurance

    • Moody's
    • Travelers
    • Nationwide
  • Technology/Information Services

    • Adobe
    • Cisco
    • Google
    • LexisNexis
    • Thomson Reuters
  • Media

    • Essence
    • Condé Nast
    • Time Warner
    • Women in Cable Telecommunications
  • Legal

    • Kane Kessler
    • Rivkin Radler
    • Shearman & Sterling
    • White & Case