How to Incorporate Charitable Giving into Your Business

There is much written about the importance of Corporate Social Responsibility programs. Reasons that companies benefit from CSR include attracting and keeping the best talent and instilling positive public opinion. But, the idea of creating and executing these programs can be overwhelming, especially when staffing at many companies is already stretched.

Our president, Lisa Tomasi, offered up some simple, concrete suggestions for companies looking to start a CSR program in an article written for CBS Small Business Pulse in February 2016. Below are her four top suggestions from the article:

Keep it Local

Look within your community and you might be surprised to discover many wonderful charitable organizations right in your own backyard. Ask for employee feedback about what causes and local charities are close to their hearts. Consider food pantries, boys and girls clubs, battered women's shelters, homeless shelters, diaper banks and animal shelters.

Use Technology

Emerging technologies are available that enable you to engage busy employees at a time and place most convenient to them. You can do an entire giving event online or incorporate it into a physical event for maximum participation. Using an online component allows you to engage all your employees at multiple locations, including contractors, off-site and part-time employees.

Make it Fun

Use social media to create excitement and encourage employees to do the same. Gamify your program by creating a friendly contest and measure results in real time. Get top management involved in the fun to show that the giving program is an important part of the corporate culture at all levels.

Celebrate Your Success

Have a goal and make it measurable. When your initiative is complete, share the results with employees and convey the impact the company has collectively made on the community. Recognize individual employees who showed extra effort, leadership, creativity and just plain enthusiasm. Finally, celebrate a job well done with a volunteer event at the charity or a simple party at the office.

We're going to add one final suggestion, and we can't stress this one enough: just go for it. Some of our best drives were built around the idea and enthusiasm of one employee. A comprehensive plan is ideal, but the fact is that from one person and one event a really wonderful program can eventually evolve.

Check out the full article on CBS Small Business Pulse.

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