CauseTalk Radio Ep80: BofA Talks CSR, Khan Academy & Product Red

Today on CauseTalk Radio, Megan and I talk to Andrew Plepler, Corporate Social Responsibility Executive, at Bank of America about their CSR efforts.

Andrew explains BofA's new initiative with the online learning site Khan Academy to provide both bank customers and non-customers free, self-paced, easy-to-understand resources to develop better money habits.

We also discuss other BofA cause initiatives, and Andrew announces on-air a brand new partnership between the bank and Product Red, a well-known organization fighting the spread of HIV/AIDS in Africa.

Tune in now! 

Show Summary (Prepared by Megan Strand!)


Obligatory mention of something sports - this time the Super Bowl and the Seahawks.


Joe introduces Andrew and Bank of America and the Khan Academy partnership.


Andrew and Joe debate whether 11-year-olds should be seasoned in investing.


Andrew explains the Khan Academy partnership and why they got involved. Financial literacy can be a dry topic - how BofA is trying to break that mold and help people get their financial houses in order.


Megan asks how the partnership started and why it falls under the CSR purview at BofA. Andrew enlightens all of us. Like most partnerships, this one started with a personal relationship.


Joe asks how BofA is measuring the success of this program. Andrew explains that after a year of the partnership, they're digging deeper into the metrics that are most important, particularly in different socio-economic constituencies.


Andrew talks about staying relevant as a bank and how they figure out if they're directionally on the right track and learning to measure how they're truly measuring financial literacy.


Andrew explains how CSR is evolving in corporate america - it used to be perceived as philanthropy and volunteerism. That's changing. Here's why from BofA's perspective.


The reach of the BofA footprint - they're in one of every two households in the country! How BofA sees CSR in a global economy.


Andrew explains how he sleeps amongst all the responsibilities he has as CSR executive and what BofA's goals and strategy are.


Andrew talks about business practice case studies on the issue of overdraft fees and how BofA ended the velocity of overdraft fees and how this was praised among consumer advocates.


Joe brings up the "Big Brother" issue of being a bank. Andrew addresses consumer behavior and how it plays into doing the right thing.


Joe remarks that it's in the best interest of companies to engage employees and customers. Andrew shares that we'll be seeing more of employee and consumer facing efforts from BofA in the future.


Andrew shares how the 'Express Your Thanks' campaign helped engage with consumers and employees.


BofA is a major MLB sponsor - the discussion turns to how that made the World Series come alive this year and how it truly brings a partnership to life.


Andrew shares about how hunger is a relevant issue and talks about how BofA tries to stay on top of these trends and craft programs around it.


Big announcement (more here) In Davos, Brian Moynihan announced a partnership with (RED) that will generate more than $10mm in the fight against AIDS. The campaign will have a flat donation from BofA and then a consumer engagement piece to call attention and visibility to the issue of AIDS.


BofA's involvement can truly make strides to solve the issue of AIDS. Andrew explains how important the need to take medication issue remains.


Where to find more about BofA's (hint…it's here)