One of the most rewarding parts of owning a small business is the extent to which you can imprint it with your own personality and values. Choosing a charity is one area in which you can let your clients know the causes that mean the most to you, while you establish yourself as a business that considers itself part of the community, is interested in helping the needy, and is committed to helping your area strive. In this post, we discuss a few ways in which giving back to the needy can also bring in big dividends and enhance staff motivation.
Philanthropy Matters to Customers
A Cone Communications and Echo Research Study found that 82% of consumers in America take corporate social responsibility into account when they purchase goods or services. Millennials, in particular, are keen to back businesses that enrich others’ lives.
In addition to building a good reputation in your community, giving back is a powerful way to network with other visionary entrepreneurs who share your passion for your cause. You may come across the same people at fundraising events, working together at the organizational stage and building relationships that could result in a future business venture together.
Charity Matters to Employees
It is vital to pick the right charity to support, since your choice will not only let your community know what matters to you, but also help shape your company’s culture and affect your staff’s morale. For instance, in a small business, the staff can jointly decide on a cause they wish to support. It may be a cancer charity if someone’s family is battling the disease, or a children’s charity if there is an organization in your local community that helps needy kids.
When staff has a say in the charities the company supports, they not only feel more motivated to take part in fundraising activities, but also feel that their core values are important to the company. Indeed, research has shown that companies who actively aid environmental and social efforts, have more engaged workers than companies that do not value these pursuits.
Charity favors your internal clients (your staff) by helping build a better community for their children. That is, whether you support a local children’s hospital, school, or sports center, you will help them feel that their company is making the community more beautiful, safer, or useful, through services that may one day be of use to their families.
Important Considerations for Your Team’s Choice of Charity
As noted by Jason Sugarman, a private equity specialist, it is vital to do the required research about your chosen charity’s mission statement (to elicit the exact nature of their work), their tax return (to see what money is spent on) and even consider third party evaluations of the charity, to ensure that they deliver the work they promise. Choosing a charity that is in line with your products or services is also important. For instance, if you sell women’s fashion, a charity supporting those battling female cancers is perfectly in line with your products, while if you own a toy shop, you might choose to support a Christmas drive to give toys to needy kids.
Charity and Branding
One way to increase your brand awareness is to sponsor a charitable event, asking the organizers to include your logo in giveaways, posters, or Tshirts. Set a small percentage of your marketing budget for good causes, which will highlight your company in a very positive setting.
Paying it forward not only reflects the zeitgeist of millennial thinking; it also consolidates your reputation in the community, helps you build networks with influential people, and motivates your staff. Enjoy deciding on causes as a team, but make sure to do conduct the required research so you support a cause that is truly worthwhile.