The minerals and metals industry is a significant contributor to the economic well-being of various countries and is also vital to the economic and social cohesion of many rural and remote communities. Mining activities can create socio-economic growth for many indigenous and traditional communities through partnerships, employment, skills development, business and spin-off opportunities, and participation in decisions and actions to protect the environment.
Defining Company Values
Having clear company values helps ensure that all employees work towards the same goals. Core values support the company’s vision and shape its culture. That’s why every single business decision should be aligned with its defined values. It helps create a purpose, improve team unity and create a sense of commitment in the workplace. When it comes to the mining industry, each stakeholder has a different way to communicate and embrace the local community where they operate. That’s why it’s vital to ensure that the company values and way of working all align to create continuity.
Creating Mutual Benefits
Trust and equality are fundamental values to ensure a solid relationship. When you take the time to create a trusting relationship, you’re able to build tangible actions such as gender participation. Working alongside local communities and exploration companies is key to establishing successful working relationships and partnerships. Try not to think of it as a cost but rather an investment. When you gain trust with the local community, you get much more out of your actions. Companies need to measure how they’re meeting demands across all sites. When you can showcase good relationships from the sites to the corporations to the stakeholders, you can see your profits and collaboration go up. One way to go about it is by showcasing local communities what your tools do with an Open Day. This way, you can create transparency and open up the conversation about how you plan to work at the mine.
Get More Productivity with Human Capital
When you replace conflict with collaboration, you’ll get more productivity. This can be achieved by talking with the local population and understanding how to best engage with them. This can be done in five stages:
1. Define initiative/project goals, participants, timelines, and resources/budget.
2. Determine the level of public engagement and choose techniques throughout the timeline.
3. Implement the public engagement.
4. Evaluate the engagement process. Make recommendations and/or decisions and share results.
5. Then you do it all over again!
When done right, these steps can be done cyclically to always ensure public engagement is executed at its finest.
Bringing it All Together
Building trust can generate genuine dialogs. When you have a community relations plan, you understand your risks and the field as well. Create a feedback/grievance mechanism through various channels to ensure communication channels are open and define a procedure for them. When you understand your commitments and ensure everyone is aligned with them, you can avoid conflict. You’ll also be able to create a community development strategy based on local expectations and high-impact alliances. Mining can provide significant economic and business opportunities for local communities and regional economies at each phase of the mineral development cycle. When all of this is done correctly, a mine can generate benefits that outlive the mine itself and help build the community’s self-reliance.