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Creating a culture of giving: 3 things we learned launching the Businessolver Foundation

Creating a culture of giving: 3 things we learned launching the Businessolver Foundation
Posted on Tuesday, February 23, 2016 by [email protected]
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Companies have responsibilities, from delivering a product or service and ensuring regulatory compliance, to managing employees and taking care of customers. Businessolver-Foundation

But there is a greater responsibility that entails more than day-to-day business: businesses also have a responsibility to give back to the people and places they serve. One of the most effective ways to do this is through a corporate giving or social responsibility program.

Launching a successful program can be challenging, though – it’s more than writing a check or organizing a corporate volunteer outing. It requires a thoughtful approach that allows the company and its employees to support meaningful causes that improve and benefit their community and our world.

For nearly two decades, Businessolver has approached business with a sense of purpose. And we’ve extended that sense of purpose to our communities by volunteering and dedicating resources to local and national philanthropies. However, as our company has grown, we’ve realized that we have the ability to do even more. Though we’ve been giving since our company’s founding, we wanted to implement greater focus and structure around our commitment to philanthropy.

With that, we decided to develop the Businessolver Foundation, which we recently launched. The Foundation is our company’s philanthropic extension focused on creating a healthy, well-educated world where community matters. We were thrilled to launch the Foundation and learned an incredible amount in the process. If your company is looking to start a corporate giving or social responsibility program, here are three insights from our experience to consider:

Identify your cause

There is an endless number of organizations and causes your company can serve. But to be most effective, it’s important to choose these beneficiaries carefully and develop a focused mission of giving.

To develop our Foundation’s mission, we engaged our employees to understand the causes that matter to them. We also evaluated the needs of our communities to identify where we could make the most beneficial impact. As a result of this exercise, we decided to dedicate our efforts to the betterment of health, education and community. All of our Foundation’s work focuses on contributing to causes that align with these three pillars.

However your company goes about determining its cause, the key is to identify a mission that resonates with its employees, communities and business objectives.

Inspire involvement

Our employees are enthusiastic about service. Their spirit and commitment to giving were critical in the development of our Foundation. No matter if your team is already passionate about service, or needs an introduction, inspiring ongoing involvement and participation is critical to the success of any corporate giving or social responsibility program.

A few ways to do this include:

  • Crowdsource: Ask employees to contribute their ideas and opinions during the development process. If they play a role in building the program, they’ll be more inclined to get involved.
  • Communicate: Effectively communicate the program’s launch to employees and include clear calls to action. A great first step is to send an internal, all-employee email that explains the program and gives clear direction on how to get involved.
  • Create: Make it easy for everyone to get involved. For example, if your company is participating in a 5K, create opportunities for all to participate, including non-runners. Employees who don’t want to race can sign-up to manage registration or volunteer at the water stations along the race course.

Stick with it

Launching a corporate giving or social responsibility program is no easy feat. Even more challenging is maintaining and growing the program over time. There will inevitably be bumps along the road to developing an effective and sustainable program, but don’t let those deter you. As with business, successful giving and social responsibility programs require time and nurturing. Just know that your efforts make a difference and the challenges are worth it.

Click here to visit the Businessolver Foundation webpage and learn more about why corporate giving matters.