Especially when things seem down
There's no reason to be the richest man in the cemetery. You can't do any business from there."
Colonel Harlan Sanders (KFC Founder)
STOP & TAKE STOCK
It is important to look at business from more than just a day-to-day perspective. We work hard to keep things going forward, to realise the dream of success but sometimes miss the point along the way.
LINK TO A PURPOSE
OK, things look slow right now so you put off the charity donations and you cut back on community support! What can that hurt? What does my little bit do anyway?
Look at some of the benefits along the way
Connecting to a cause:
Links you into the local community - The very people who support your business.
Gives you credibility - It shows your 'heart' and builds your reputation on a much wider scale.
Builds you own passion to succeed - I have noticed a distinct difference in people who are in business for more than just their own benefit. They are passionate and enthusiastic - they want to build and grow rather than sit still in 'comfort'.
Builds your staff and family - Staff and family become enthusiastic about helping. 'Fun' fundraisers and events give an excuse to break the monotony and enjoy work - it rubs off on customers. Fun is contagious.
Gives the charity a platform - Lets people see the work being done and join you in supporting it & making the work known to those who need help.
Actually helps people - I am fond of telling local business groups that what seems like a small amount per month donated to a local charity or organisation can become quite significant when a group decide to pull together. $500 a month may seem a drop in the ocean but linked with 10, 20 or more other businesses it can amount to $60,000; $120,000 or more over 12 months. Look at money box collections - $50 per week over 12 months by only 10 outlets is $26,000!
Doesn't cost much - giving can be monetary but can also be in goods or services. Look for a charity that 'fits' your business and its style.
MAKE IT PART OF YOUR MARKETING
- Don't keep it quiet!
If you want to help - let others know, the reasons already given make it logical to put this into the marketing plan - not only your business benefits, but the cause will be helped in a far greater way as well.
Involve the staff
Visit the charity where possible
Give in kind
Find the right 'fit'
- A Cause you and your business can relate to
Local if your business is local (or national/International)
Ability to work with the charity staff
Regular updates on the charity's work
No issues with publicity
Something that fires your passion
Links with your business roots eg sponsoring children in the country your goods come from, helping students in schools from your staff base (McDonalds currently do this with a Maths program).