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The Business Of Giving Back: Five Reasons Why Philanthropy Should Be At The Core Of Your Corporate Strategy "As a proponent of philanthropy, I can't stress enough the need for every business owner to be actively involved in social responsibility, and giving back to the community in some form or another."

By Murtaza Hashwani

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For me, money, recognition, or success can't truly satisfy the deepest of human needs the way philanthropy can. Undoubtedly, the most calming and enlightening experience is that of giving back to the community, and seeing the results of your philanthropic endeavors come to fruition. At a very basic level, philanthropy makes people happier.

Even before Hashoo Foundation was formally launched in 1988, my father, Sadruddin Hashwani, was actively involved in providing communities in Pakistan with tools to develop themselves economically and socially while positively impacting their living standards. So, you could say that philanthropy is truly in my DNA.

Over the past several decades, Hashoo Foundation has rolled out numerous projects successfully that range from scholarships to economic development to environment and climate change. As the Chairman of Hashoo Foundation, it is my utmost priority to continue to launch more initiatives that result in social change and create opportunity for all those involved.

As a proponent of philanthropy, I can't stress enough the need for every business owner to be actively involved in social responsibility, and giving back to the community in some form or another. Below are some the reasons why philanthropy should be at the core of your corporate strategy:

Related: New Childhood Development And Cognitive Skills App, Maharat, Launched By Alwaleed Philanthropies and Saudi Ministry of Communications and Information Technology

1. Make a difference The simplest advantage of donating or setting aside money for welfare of the community is the opportunity to make a difference. There's nothing more satisfying than to see your local areas or communities become a better place to live in. When the communities are able to elevate their lives, they will be able to contribute positively to the economy at large.

2. Engaged employees Creating a culture of philanthropy at a corporate level has its benefits in creating employee engagement. It also provides employees a deeper sense of pride in the company they represent. By partaking in socio and economic causes and charities, you can provide your employees with so much more value in their daily work. Employees could be encouraged to share their ideas or thoughts thus adding more value to your philanthropic initiatives. As a result, companies can create a strong, supportive, and highly engaged workplace environment.

3. Better customer/client relationships Philanthropy helps align your brand with a greater cause, instead of just building an empire for yourself. It helps build positive relationships with potential and existing clients. It's no surprise that globally respected businesses and corporations also want to engage with those who also share similar values. Even customers want companies to care about social, political, and environmental issues. The sense of "doing good" is imperative for every individual and who could be a potential client or customer.

4. Invest and grow By investing in local communities, you also help grow your business. The positive social and economic impact of philanthropy is in direct correlation with your business. By giving back to the community, not only do you help create more jobs, you also ensure local businesses and talent growth. This can make communities in which these businesses operate much stronger while having a positive social and economic influence.

5. Make a global impact Making a positive change in your local community or aligning with any charitable initiative means that you are making a positive global impact for the betterment of society. This also enables you to connect with like-minded people from around the world, and these collaborations can lead to mutually beneficial business. When you share the same vision, you can be a part of a bigger movement encouraging changes around the world.

Related: Financier-Turned-Philanthropist Michael Milken On Entrepreneurship In The Digital Era

Murtaza Hashwani

Deputy Chairman, Hashoo Group

Murtaza Hashwani grew up in a family that believed in helping others and making a difference in the world. Through Hashoo Foundation, the family are actively involved empowering communities by facilitating opportunities to become independent and creating a greater social impact. As the Chairman of Hashoo Foundation, philanthropy is part of Murtaza’s DNA.

Over the past few decades, his ambitious plans for greater outreach and meaningful impact with access to education, health and sustainable livelihood have resulted in millions of men and women directly benefitting in rural and urban settings in Pakistan. Born in Karachi, Pakistan, Murtaza graduated from Santa Monica in Business Management and after a eight year stint of flexing his entrepreneurial ideas successfully, he joined the family’s hospitality business. Hands on business experience under the supervision of his father, the legendary Sadruddin Hashwani, ensured that Murtaza delved deeply in every aspect of the hospitality and hotel business.

This didn’t stop him from honing his academic skills further.

Hotel management courses from Cornell to business management from London Business School to a Management Programme from Harvard Business School, Murtaza seamlessly combined experience with business theory. He applied the learnings to efficiently launch multiple successful business ventures including the first hospitality school in Pakistan, Hashoo School of Hospitality Management, which is affiliated with Sheffield Business School, UK. Whether it’s the recently launched digital payment portal Foree, or the revolutionary product that has transformed water problems in Pakistan and soon all third world countries called EveryWater, or even a hospitality tech services company based in the UAE, Ascendant, the secret behind Murtaza’s success is his foresight. By developing these disruptive technologies it’s through his vision and focus that he has become one of the foremost business leaders from Pakistan with global reach.

While others see limitations Murtaza Hashwani sees opportunity and possibility. Murtaza considers himself a facilitator of success. By embedding the foundation into his business, he wants to give people around him the support they need to excel. Whether it is a student vying for scholarship through Hashoo Foundation or an employee pursuing his passion or creativity. Applying his business acumen and experience, all he does is give them a platform for innovation while guiding and polishing it for end users and links it to create a bigger social impact.

There’s no typical day in the life of Murtaza Hashwani as he juggles between the expansion plans for Hashoo Hotels, Hashoo Foundation and a series of tech launches. An entrepreneur, philanthropist and a visionary, Murtaza’s ultimate aim is facilitate positive and impactful change in the lives of individuals and communities at large.

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