It’s that time of year! The holidays encourage not only personal generosity, but give businesses an opportunity to be more charitable as well.
No business wants to appear Scrooge-y, so it behooves them to give time and money to good causes. Plus, it’s just a nice thing to do for others.
In the spirit of giving, here are 3 reasons either volunteering and/or donating to charity is a smart move for your business and some examples of what other companies are doing. If a company like Cards Against Humanity can raise $100,000 on Black Friday for literally doing nothing but “dig a hole” in the earth, think of what a meaningful contribution could do.
- It’s Good PR
Even if a company already has a positive reputation, it’s further bolstered by generous donations. High-end outdoor gear company Patagonia is a great example of a brand that walks the talk.
Patagonia donated 100% of its 2016 Black Friday sales to environmental nonprofits. The company estimated it would make $2 million in sales, so imagine their surprise when the initiative resulted in sales totaling $10 million. Talk about a humbling experience of public support.
They’ve built a solid reputation over the years, so it’s not hard to imagine people stepping up for their cause while simultaneously breaking record sales that day.
According to an article in Fortune, most companies don’t donate out of sentiment but out of duty to the company’s business objectives. When Kraft donates to food banks, that is a move that aligns with the company’s core food identity. It just makes sense.
- It’s Personal
Small businesses with limited resources can still do good things that have an impact, especially on a local level. Writing a check isn’t necessarily the only option to giving.
Ronald McDonald Houses in cities all over the country are always looking for corporate sponsors, which could entail monetary donations, volunteering or in-kind donations. Ronald McDonald House allows families with sick children to stay together during treatment – a “home-away-from home” concept that helped lessen the burden for 7 million families in 2015.
Businesses can do something as thoughtful and simple as cooking dinner for the families staying in the house once a month, or more if desired.
Crowdsourcing is another popular method of giving, especially since many companies are fully funded by charitable donations and implementing projects that actually create jobs in the U.S.
Ultimately, the holidays are an opportune time for companies to harness their giving spirit, which hopefully provides momentum to continue the good will throughout the entire year.
- It Engages Employees
It’s great for the workers of a company to be involved in volunteering or hands-on efforts to help others. Whether it’s preparing dinner at the Ronald McDonald House, or holding an internal food drive and then donating to local food banks or shelters, employees develop a sense of pride in the company they work for.
Employees not only connect with the community, they build camaraderie among themselves. Working with like-minded individuals builds relationships through the act of service.
Donations aren’t all about the tax break. Smart executives and companies know that value of developing programs to help their philanthropic efforts grow even deeper roots.
Let us know what your company is doing to give back to the community or on a broader scale.