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Business and Philanthropy - Why It's Important to get Your Employees Involved in the Community

By Barbara Beauregard   |    February 2, 2015   |    10:31 AM

Why It's Important to get Your Employees Involved in the Community

Many businesses give back to their surrounding community by donating money to local non-profit organizations. But businesses that encourage employee participation in local charitable events and regular community service projects are often held in very high regard. A business that gives back to its community often earns a well-deserved reputation of being an excellent place to work. Additionally, the community appreciates the effort and often chooses to support a business that supports local charities.

There are several ways in which a business can encourage its employees to get involved in the community, and there are many good reasons to promote community involvement:

Ask your employees which organizations they would like to support. Employees will be much more willing to dedicate their time and effort to a local non-profit organization that promotes their own personal values.

Ask your customers which organizations they would like to see you support. Asking your customers for their advice on which local non-profit organizations you should support is beneficial for a few reasons: 1) it allows them to be involved, 2) it makes them aware of the fact that your organization is dedicated to giving back to the community, and 3) it allows them to jump on the bandwagon and also support your efforts with a financial donation or by committing to volunteer time.

Share your philanthropic efforts with the public. If your organization is dedicated to supporting local charities and/or non-profit organizations, there is no reason you should not use your philanthropic efforts as part of a public relations campaign. If your company does something good for society, let the public know about it.

Determine if your organization is eligible for tax benefits. It may be possible for your business to benefit from its community service efforts via a tax deduction. Make sure to consult with a tax professional to determine if your community service is eligible for any type of benefit from the IRS.

Community service projects create bonds among employees. When employees of a business are encouraged to participate in a community service project together - outside of their normal working environment - they are likely to form a bond that they would not otherwise achieve. This camaraderie will carry over into the workplace and will create a more cohesive group of employees within your organization.

It's important to remember that non-profit organizations and local charities require assistance all year-round. Many businesses focus on giving during the holiday season, when help is actually needed during every month of the year. As a business owner, if you make it a priority to encourage your employees to get involved in the community year-round, the community will take notice and will reward you with well deserved positive recognition.