Oct 20 4 min read
6 Ways Companies Incorporate Philanthropy Into Their Culture
Philanthropy and company culture are two significant, but separate, entities on their own. Combining these two organizational properties can only strengthen the company. This power couple promotes value to the business by attracting talent and boosting employee morale. Philanthropy is known as the desire to promote quality of life, especially in the form of donation of time or money. Philanthropy goes hand in hand with aspects of company culture like work-life balance, fair pay, and investment matching. With these parallels in mind, here are 6 ways philanthropy and company culture can intertwine.
Declare Ethical Labor Practices
Not only is ethical labor one of the main factors of corporate social responsibility, but it is also a great way to promote philanthropy and culture. Practicing ethical labor can be based on (but not limited to) humane hours, fair pay, and meeting fair trade standards. While the idea of fair labor isn’t exactly “philanthropy”, it is a way to encourage staff to hold themselves to a higher standard of ethics. Also, declaring fair labor makes consumers that much more confident in the companies they support. It will also make other companies want to follow suit on the fair labor train, which has an even greater impact on the world.
Giving may seem rudimentary, but there are lots of small ways businesses can encourage philanthropic donations that add up to something large. Two common ways to encourage giving (for the sake of both philanthropy and culture) are by matching employee donations to charities and/or matching customer purchases. Businesses often choose to match customer purchases of basic goods like canned food, clothing, or hygiene items. Another way to encourage giving is by matching employee and customer monetary donations. Overall, it feels good to give back; employees and customers will be proud, which contributes to a positive company environment.
Partner With a Charity
While any kind of giving is important, charitable partnerships are a way to make an even larger impact beyond raising funds or donating goods. When a company publicly partners with a charity, both brands get recognition, and both brands reap the benefit of making a difference, making it a win-win situation. One example of a charity partnership is when companies have pink breast cancer awareness merchandise for October. Both brands get to unlock networking opportunities that allow business culture and philanthropy to grow. Partnering with a charity is a noteworthy way to make long-lasting friendships with do-good brands.
Offer Paid Volunteer Time
VTO, or volunteer time off, is something approximately 1 in 4 companies is now doing. Let’s face it, any employee will jump at any opportunity for paid time off, even if that means they spend the day volunteering rather than at work. Typically, companies offer between 8 and 40 hours to volunteer. Volunteer time off can also be a great company culture elevation because it’s a team-building experience. This is especially important for companies with many departments that don’t always get to interact. Not only are employees getting paid to help, but they will also leave feeling better about the company they work for. That’s a huge morale boost if we’ve ever seen one.
Donate a Portion of Your Profits
Donating a portion of company profits is a tried and true way of incorporating philanthropy into the company culture. The magic donation percentage is about 5 percent for small companies, and larger companies are usually between 1 and 2 percent. Donating a portion of profits is a way to show consumers that the company is more than just selling a good product. It shows that the business wants to contribute to a better world and that the organization is not using the company solely for monetary benefit.
Research is at the core of business innovation. Innovative companies also tend to have a better company culture and attract the best talent. Most internal company research would not be considered a form of philanthropy, but donating money (as well as company time) into research that promotes quality of life, is considered philanthropy. Donating money to the fight against climate change has been gaining popularity due to the pressure that companies feel from consumers to be eco-friendly. Businesses are also spending more time tracking data to make consumers aware of the impacts their company has on the earth. Companies that support research typically want what’s good for tomorrow’s planet and society as a whole.
Businesses are almost required to have some form of philanthropic giving in today’s world. Whether making donations, volunteering, or simply supporting, philanthropy can make a substantial impact on a companies employees and customers. For both small and large businesses, giving is important, and will affect the companies culture. Also as a consumer, you might want to reconsider your answer when companies ask if you want to round up your change for donation. Remember that every penny counts when supporting the greater good. For more information on company philanthropy, SCORD is your source for all things corporate social responsibility.