Faces of GAP: Marianela Rojas Guillen
Name: Marianela “Nela” Rojas Guillen Work location: San Jose, Costa Rica Hire date: January, 2008 Position: VP of Web Technologies…Read More
Modern businesses are expected to do more than just look after their own. While it’s not mandatory to partake in non-profit initiatives, they can be beneficial for both businesses and the local community in today’s environment. Non-profit initiatives for business are a win-win for everyone involved.
A lot of businesses shy away from the opportunities because they see them as time-consuming and costly, but the reality is you get back something from any time you put in. Plus, you’ve got peace of mind that as well as running a successful business, you’re contributing to society.
Some businesses have done a lot of good and helped to completely transform local communities, just by giving a bit of time and money. As more businesses get on board, the positive impact will build momentum, improving communities for the long-term.
In a nutshell, they include events and activities that businesses can be a part of that benefit local communities and charities. There are all sorts of ways of boosting your corporate social responsibility through non-profit schemes, all you need to do is find one that’s the right fit for your business. Whether that’s trying to help kids in school’s exercise more, putting on a local event or doing a fundraiser for a charity that’s close to your heart.
A lot of activities and local events simply wouldn’t be able to run without the help of businesses willing to support them. They often rely entirely on the generosity of business leaders in the community. It’s so important for non-profits to build strong ties with businesses that can help keep their vision alive.
‘As a rule, non-profits are more money-conscious than business enterprises are. They talk and worry about money much of the time because it is so hard to raise and because they always have so much less of it than they need. But non-profits do not base their strategy on money, nor do they make it the center of their plans, as so many corporate executives do.’ Harvard Business Review
Strengthening community ties
Not for profit initiatives help to strengthen local ties and build strong relationships between charities, organizations, and businesses so that everyone is working together. It can help to maintain a strong and friendly community spirit which strengthens the sense of community and keeps local commerce going.
Growing business relations
Working together with other businesses on non-profit initiatives results in opportunities for partnerships and teaming up for projects. Connecting businesses makes them stronger by improving referral rates and brand recognition.
Keeps charities and clubs afloat
An injection of cash or even just support from local businesses can help keep charities and local clubs going. The community benefits from having access to clubs and associations funded by charities, and businesses benefit by having a strong community to serve.
Help manage community issues and struggles
The support of local businesses can help local communities raise awareness on community struggles and issues.
Businesses can help move key projects forward to initiate positive changes in local areas. Whether that’s working on new projects that may serve the underprivileged, helping at-risk youth get training or internships, or supporting non-profits that aren’t raising enough funds to stay afloat. Non-profit initiatives can create changes that have a lasting impact on communities.
Local environmental projects
Many non-profit initiatives involve helping to improve the local environment, encourage sustainability and create a more appealing local area for everyone. For example, there are schemes like ‘Trees for cities’ where local communities and schools are encouraged to plant trees and grow food.
It may not seem like businesses get a big return out of helping others, but being charitable has long-term benefits. Being perceived as a business that’s invested in the community builds a reputation that no marketing campaign can match.
Businesses who support #philanthropy will build a reputation that no marketing campaign can match. Click To Tweet
Employees naturally work for money, but many prefer to work with businesses that have a sense of purpose and that contribute to societal issues (think millennials). This brings us onto corporate and social responsibility.
Did you know that 93% of the world’s largest 250 companies now publish annual CSR reports? Non-profit initiatives are a huge part of CSR and can really help improve your business credentials.
In today’s digital environment, corporate contributions (or lack thereof) are available with just a few clicks. All growing businesses should focus on a charitable role, as competing brands recognize the long-term value to brand building and many are already participating. Read more about why corporate social responsibility is so important here.
Firstly, you can shout about all the fantastic work you are doing which creates positive PR for your business. And all businesses could use a dose of positive PR every now and then. You can tell prospective clients about your work and ask local journalists to cover some of the most interesting non-profit initiatives you’re involved with or publish press releases to attract news articles and interviews.
A strong reputation locally
The more non-profit work you do, the more your business will be recognized locally as a brand with the right values. Taking part in these initiatives gets staff members out and about and right at the heart of the local community, which is a great way of getting your business known.
If you help support a local charity or non-profit initiative, the chances are your branding will be displayed. Working on these projects is a smart way to promote your business while doing some good at the same time.
Not only will your involvement in non-profit initiatives help keep existing employees happy and engaged, but it can also help you to attract more local talent. When people associate your company with non-profit connections, they will view your business in a positive light at application time.
Strong business values
Another way in which businesses benefit from these initiatives is it shows that they have strong business values. People naturally want to do business with ethical companies who care about corporate responsibility, and these schemes can help prove that you truly are invested in helping the local community. 50% of consumers are willing to pay more for products from socially responsible companies
Master new skills
You and your staff can use non-profit initiatives as a way of learning new skills. You can select an initiative that will be beneficial to your staff where they get to do something different. It’s always good to get out of the office and take a break from the daily grind, and what better way than a not for profit scheme where you’ve got the chance to truly do some valuable local work?
Learn a thing or two from non-profits
Too many businesses become so focused on money and making a profit that they start to forget their business vision. Non-profits are usually focused on what their mission is rather than purely focusing on financial returns.
According to Harvard Business Review, ‘The best non-profits devote a great deal of thought to defining their organization’s mission. They avoid sweeping statements full of good intentions and focus, instead, on objectives that have clear-cut implications for the work their members perform—staff and volunteers both.’
It’s sometimes good to get out of your comfort zone and see how other organizations and agencies do things. You’re sure to find inspiration!
At GAP, we believe in non-profit initiatives and participate in many programs which include but are not limited to:
As you can see, there are clearly many benefits to both businesses and the community, so what’s stopping you? It’s wonderful to see communities thriving because everyone is lending a hand and doing their part. Find out for yourself by taking part in a non-profit initiative on your own or in partnership with us. For a limited time, GAP will donate $100.00 to your favorite charity for your participation in a Discovery Call.