Holidays are coming – you probably don’t need me to remind you of that! Everywhere you go people are preparing for the season of giving. And all of that generosity includes charitable giving.
As individuals, we give to charities with causes we care deeply about. As businesses and organizations, giving can be both heartfelt and strategic. Statistics show that corporate giving is growing and it’s not hard to see why. Giving back builds respect and a good reputation in the community and it makes your community a better place to live. Study after study shows that employees—particularly millennials—prefer to work for companies that practice environmental and social responsibility. It’s also something that matters more and more to investors, suppliers and customers.
In short, good giving is good business. I have some experience in helping companies establish corporate social responsibility (CSR) programs and an important part of CSR is giving back to the communities where we work. So if you are embarking on a giving program, here are a few words of advice:
- Make a business case. Look no further than improved employee retention and satisfaction rates, happy customers and suppliers, and significant branding and public relations opportunities, and your business case will be made.
- Choose causes aligned with your brand. If you sell hiking equipment, maybe your giving should be to saving the rainforest. If you run a website that appeals to young families, then give to early childhood education. You are a pet blogger, so you support animal rights charities. You get the gist.
- Get employees excited and involved. Employees can be your best cheerleaders and ambassadors. Get them involved early and often in choosing charities to support, volunteering and planning events. Host a dual-purpose event that is both a team-building exercise and volunteer effort.
- There is no “I” in teamwork. When a corporate giving program brings together people from all levels of the organization – from C-level to front line – everyone feels like they are working together toward a common goal. This feeling of teamwork can extend beyond the corporate charity to positively influence other aspects of work.
- Shout it from the rooftops. Your giving program won’t find success if no one knows about it. Use multiple channels to reach your all your audiences, including email, PR, company newsletters, phone calls, posters and social media. Developing a consistent message across various forms of communication will help drive the message home and build broader awareness for your corporate giving goals and success.
There is nothing more rewarding to me than helping organizations give back to the community! If you need some help in this area, hit me up at www.powersresourcecenter.com