For leading businesses around the world, community engagement and charitable giving are priorities that speak volumes about what a company and its leaders truly value. Top-tier companies such as Walmart and Wells Fargo provide hundreds of millions of dollars in charitable giving each year, for example, while Microsoft founder Bill Gates has donated over 50 billion dollars to humanitarian causes over the last two decades alone. Here are just a few of the workplace benefits of a robust business charity program, and why helping others is often a central facet of successful entrepreneurship.
Perhaps second only to the genuine good that can be accomplished through charitable work, one of the strongest arguments for community engagement on a company-wide scale is the opportunity to network with other business and community leaders: via community engagement, companies can connect with current and potential business partners, clients, and customers who share their vision. Networking is a vital aspect of any business, and volunteer work and charitable giving allow businesses to demonstrate the values that they hold most dear to the people who matter most.
A Shared Company Vision
Just as a good structure derives its true strength from the solidness of its foundation, community engagement reinforces the collective belief system of a workplace by creating a unified vision of a company’s values and future goals. Through community engagement, business leaders create a genuine sense of teamwork among all levels of their organization; more often than not, that sense of teamwork will be the chief bedrock of the organization as a whole.
As the turnover rates of some of the world’s highest paying firms show, money isn’t always the best motivator for employees when it comes to job satisfaction. In fact, for most people building their careers, a sense of shared vision and a high degree of personal impact on a community will often trump the financial rewards of a higher-paying but less satisfying job. To build long-term relationships with employees, in other words, charitable work is often an essential step towards meaningful employee engagement.
For these reasons, companies who place a high priority on community engagement are able to help both their communities and themselves in equal measure. To truly show the world what a business is all about, it isn’t enough to just talk a good game about charitable works: By making a real difference in the lives of others, businesses demonstrate their true mettle. And that is business at its best!