Philanthropy isn’t just for large corporations who give thousands of dollars annually. Philanthropy is for everyone. This includes you, small businesses! In celebration of Small Business Week BC, we’ve compiled our top tips to make philanthropy both accessible and fun for small businesses.
Tip #1 – Involve Your Employees in Giving
One of the benefits of philanthropy for small business is that you can develop your giving program from the ground up, with feedback from everyone in your company. This includes your employees. According to America’s Charity Snapshot, “71% of surveyed employees say it is imperative or very important to work where culture is supportive of giving and volunteering.” Employees are showing their passion to give back, so why not leverage that enthusiasm? Prioritize giving back as a core value of your company and then start a conversation with your team.
“71% of surveyed employees say it is imperative or very important to work where culture is supportive of giving and volunteering.”
A great place to start is asking your employees what causes they care about most. Perhaps they’re already out in the community giving to charity. In that case, there are plenty of great options for individual employee volunteer programs to empower the work their already doing. Also, if you have any employees that are enthusiastic about giving, then give them an opportunity to plan and lead your company giving. By involving your entire team, you can make a large impact with just a small number of resources.
However, if you find that your employees are interested in supporting specific causes, but don’t have any charity partners yet, then it’s time to do a bit of research.
Tip #2 – Think and Give Locally
When it comes to deciding who to give to, start local. Local giving benefits you, your charity partner and improves the well-being of the very community that invests back into your business. Giving locally is a win-win scenario that creates a reciprocal relationship between your small business and the community your impacting.
Vancouver, BC by Kyle Ryan
Depending on where your located, the causes that are most critical to your area will differ. Doing research can quickly connect you to the various issues in your region, and the various charities that address these problems. Use a tool such as #BrokersOfGood to search through various giving opportunities in your community that align with the specific causes you want to support.
Pro tip? Find a cause to support that’s not only local but also aligns with your company’s values, and the values of your employees. Finding this space of shared values will ensure a successful giving program.
Tip # 3 – Give in Other Ways than Financial
Consider the resources that you do have, whether it be time, talent, goods, or even your company work space.
So you’ve found a few potential charity partners but don’t have a large budget to give – that’s okay! Consider the resources that you do have, whether it be time, talent, goods, or even your company work space.
Talent is a great resource to leverage. Perhaps you’re a tech company that specializes in website design and marketing. Why not offer those skills to a charity to improve their visibility?
Again, this is a great place to ask your employees what they prefer when it comes to volunteering their time. Are they interested in giving their work related skills? Or perhaps they prefer doing something totally different from their daily activities. Both are great scenarios with many opportunities for staff to donate their time in a meaningful way.
Additionally, many charities seek donations in the form of gifts. This can be for a silent auction or an event their holding. They also frequently need space to host meetings or events. You may not have money to give but likely have something else that is valuable to a charity!
So, what are you waiting for ?
No matter how small you are or what stage you’re at in your giving, HeartPress can help. We work with companies who are ready to start seeing the benefits of investing in their community. Get started with a #BrokersOfGood account to access hundreds of giving opportunities for your business and your employees, all in one place.