Corporations and their communities are inextricably linked.
A Community is What You Define It
The definition of a community is not the vast corporate park within which a business’s headquarters may be located, but rather the surrounding areas where most of its employees live and commute to work each day.
For a small business such as a corner grocery store, their community is their neighborhood. For a mid-size to a large corporation, their community could be a series of neighborhoods or an entire city. For example, the corporation UE.co, which serial entrepreneur Jason Kulpa co-founded in 2008, is located near the Embarcadero in San Diego, but this philanthropic CEO regards the entire city of San Diego as his community.
If you have offices in other cities – then those cities form part of your community as well. And if you are a virtual employer with employees working from their homes around the world – their locations also form part of your community.
Wherever your employees live – there is your community.
I’ll go further. Depending on what your company manufacturers – your clients or customers and the locations where they live form part of your community as well.
Your employees keep you in business – and so do the people who purchase or use your products. It’s all part of a circle.
What is “Giving Back”?
A desire to help others is a basic human emotion. Most people will do “good deeds” on a personal level – they’ll bring cans of food to food drives, hold open a door for someone carrying a lot of packages, even mow an elderly neighbor’s lawn.
Individuals who work for small to large businesses give back in their private lives, but as part of a company – they can pool the efforts of its C-Suite as well as its employees and do much more for the community than as a single individual.
Corporations can, therefore “give back” a great deal to the people that keep them in business.
How to “Give Back”
Giving back to one’s community can take on a myriad of forms. A small business could sponsor a local sports team, for example – paying for its shirts (which will bear the business’s name) and for food and drink at a team picnic before or after the season. Depending on the nature of the company, it could offer discounted services to certain segments of the population. A bowling center, for example, could provide discounted games for individuals with special needs on a regular basis.
A large, profitable corporation is in a position to do much more to help its community. As a result, it’s charitable and “giving back” activities must be planned to maximize its efforts. Partnerships with signature causes should be developed. For example, UE.co has founded a program called “UE Gives Back” and encourages their employees to participate in any way they can – by donating funds or volunteering their time. The company has partnered with Special Olympics and GiGi’s Playhouse (a Down’s Syndrome achievement center), the Humane Society, the San Diego Police Foundation, and several more, smaller entities.
The Positive Effects of “Giving Back”
There are three main positive effects of a business – of any size – giving back to its community.
First and most important – it helps the community. Secondly, it helps maintain morale among the workforce. Employees appreciate that they are working for a company that cares about others and shows that care positively and effectively. Thirdly, giving back generates goodwill within the community itself – over, and above the goodwill, a business entity possesses due to brand loyalty.
Goodwill is a prime asset for any business, and charitable giving is a step toward ensuring everyone has equal chances to be recognized.
About Jason Kulpa:
Jason Kulpais the founder and CEO of UE.co, an Inc. Fastest Growing Company that delivers cutting-edge marketing products and services. After graduating from the W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State, Mr. Kulpa made a career from encouraging growth in several exciting areas of the tech industry. He is San Diego Business Journal’s “Most Admired CEO” for 2018.
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