There are a myriad of reasons to start a philanthropy program within your company, and if you’re not sure where to even begin, our T&N Gives Back team is here to help. We want to share all of our secrets so that more companies feel empowered to get involved in their communities—no matter how small they start out. This year has shown us that we're all responsible for making our communities better, safer placers to live, and corporate giving is an incredible way to make an impact. In our Gives Back series, we’ll be exploring all of the ways in which your company can start reaching out to the people around you.
We’re starting with the four reasons every company should start a philanthropy program
1. Encouraging giving back increases employee engagement.
Your employees crave ways to impact their local communities, and creating a path to giving back is a great way to help them get connected. Boston College studied the successes of community involvement programs within companies and found that 95% of philanthropic programs had a positive impact on employee engagement. In another study, when asked if their company had a clear purpose, 62% of employees of companies without a focused charitable giving effort said yes, whereas 85% of employees of companies with defined community involvement said yes.
2. A healthy philanthropic mission attracts top talent.
Gone are the days of simply punching in and punching out. Employees want to be part of something bigger more than ever before. While Millennials in particular are searching for companies that have a strong community impact, talent of all ages are looking to join a team that has a purpose in what they do. Over 70% of respondents in a Canadian survey said they’d consider changing jobs if the new company had a bigger commitment to corporate charity. Employees consider corporate social responsibility to be just as much of a benefit as all of the more expected perks.
3. Supporting your community increases brand love for your company.
When presented with two products at similar price points, customers are more likely to support the brand that does more for their communities than one that doesn’t. It makes people feel confident about their purchase when the company they give their money to used a portion of it to do some good. When you look at major brands like Toms, Warby Parker, and Newman’s Own, they all have a very strong philanthropic mission that both their employees and their customers get to participate in. Not every company is big enough to be able to match donations, or give back on a global scale, but starting small is a great way to make sure your customers know what you stand for and where you’re focusing your efforts.
4. And, most importantly, you should start a gives back program because it’s the right thing to do.
This year, we’ve seen a huge increase in social responsibility in the corporate world, and we can all make a huge impact and keep the momentum rolling. You don’t have to launch a massive, national giving program right out the gate. We’ll be getting into more details in later posts, but start small. Reach out to your employees—they all have connections and passions that can help shape your program. Start with one or two local organizations near your office and let them tell you what they need. Allow and encourage employees to take volunteer time off and contribute to their communities throughout the year.
These small changes can start building a robust and generous giving program that has major impacts for the people in your own backyard.
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