Businesses of all sizes can help change and impact communities. Offering volunteer opportunities can be considered a perk by some employees and even a “cool” factor in recruiting younger workers.
“Every month we try to have something that the company is doing outside of business to help people get to know each other and encourage teamwork,” says Ted Bill, president of Naples-based Pelican Wire Co. A 2015 benefits study by the Society for Human Resource Management found that about 21 percent of companies give workers paid time off for volunteering, a figure that is on the rise from 2009, when 15 percent of companies offered the benefit.
Here are five ways to encourage social responsibility and community service in your company.
- Instill a team approach and let employees choose or create their volunteer project. As a company, you can decide on causes that are most important and have your activities fit that focus.
- Provide recognition for participation, such as T-shirts, prizes or a mention in an internal newsletter or press release.
- Set an example by participating.
- Combine giving back with a company event or outing. For example, if you have a company picnic or activity, ask employees to bring in canned food, clothing or toys as a donation.
- Provide an incentive. If you buy a block of tickets to a sporting event, ask for a donation for part of the cost that will be given to a local charity.