What a busy week it's been for us at Best Roofing. We have two big charity events happening this week that we're sponsoring. Tomorrow you'll see some of us out on the golf course taking part in a golf tournament sponsored by NAIOP that benefits Taylor's Closet, a non-profit organization that sets up clothing boutiques in cities for foster girls. I could go on and on about how wonderful this organization is...but I'm a true believer in the power of video...so check this out for yourself. (you might need a tissue)
Then on Friday you'll see us in downtown Fort Lauderdale at the Esplanade Park for the Marine Industry Cares Foundation's 3rd annual Spin-A-Thon, benefiting Kids in Distress (KID), an organization that is dedicated to helping to put an end to child abuse and neglect in our community.
Here's some suggestions on how to incorporate outreach efforts into your corporate culture:
Make it a part of your business strategy
Every company, department, and even individual person, should have a strategy written down that incorporates key objectives and specific steps or tactics to reach those objectives, including measurable goals and dates. Your contributory efforts should be documented in that strategy, as well, and should be as cohesively integrated as your sales and marketing efforts.
Get into the habit (not literally)
We all look at giving back with the best of intentions, and then we get 3 years down the road and we’ve never actually helped anyone. If it doesn’t get created as a habit at the beginning and become as strong of a part of your culture as checking email, Twitter, or Facebook, it will never happen.
Focus on your strengths – Be efficient!
Not all giving back has to be about going to impoverished areas and building houses or writing checks. So what can you do? Anything that is in line with your strengths and the strengths of your company. If you build websites, offer to create/improve websites for underfunded non-profits. I'm sure within a 10 mile radius of your business there are organizations whose sole focus is on non-profit work that you can easily partner.
Market all of your activities
Just like you’d send out press releases for big deals or achievements in your core business operations, you should also market your benevolent activities. Now, this may seem like singing your own praises, but this is actually very important. First of all, when you advertise you’re trying to tell potential customers about your corporate culture and who you are as a group. If giving back is part of that, then it’s only right that you should include those activities in your message.
Also, marketing the work that you are doing can make it easier for you to continue that work in the future. Many times, the largest time use involved with giving back is figuring out how best to do it and connecting with those who are truly in need. By advertising the work you’re doing, it will be much easier to connect with people who need the type of help you’re offering, or connect with people who can point you in the right direction. In the end, an open dialogue with the public about all of your business’ activities is going to be mutually beneficial for all involved.
At Best Roofing...
We feel you can’t truly serve a community unless you provide the help it needs most, which is why giving back is so important to us. The state of the economy has businesses of all sizes cutting back everywhere they can. But one area where we feel you shouldn't cut back is in giving back. While we are still a consumer-based society, people are certainly being more judicious about where they’re spending their money, and seem to want to “like” the person or people they’re paying money to, beyond just liking the product. That being said, a great product and a great pitch is still the best way to make a sale and I doubt that will ever change. But it’s important to continue to refine your approach with customers, and incorporating a philosophy of giving into your corporate culture can certainly move you in a positive direction.