by Matt Combs of YourCause

 If you tuned it for Building A Culture of Goodwill: Part 1 last week, you now have a goodwill committee established…right!?! Ok, so maybe you haven’t gotten that far, but once you do, you will have made HUGE strides in creating a culture of goodwill in your business. Now you may be asking, “Is that it? Is there nothing else I can do…easily?” Of course not! Below are a couple of ideas on how you can easily integrate giving into your employees’ work life.

 Supporting Individual Passions – It is important to foster and support your employees’ individual passions. A good way to ensure that you are supporting personal causes is to weave goodwill into your employee benefits by introducing philanthropic personal time off (PPTO), also know as volunteer time off (VTO). PPTO is paid time off that employees can use to volunteer during office hours with a charity of their choice. PPTO parameters vary by company, but at YourCause we have found a common cap at two business days or 16 hours. The simple gesture of adding PPTO to your policy manual shows that you are encouraging employees to give back.  After participating in a PPTO event, employees should be invited to share their stories with their co-workers, how serving made them feel and whom or what they impacted. Their enthusiasm about the program will be contagious, allowing the goodwill culture to grow.

Employee Performance and Goodwill – Throughout the year, your goodwill committee will create multiple opportunities for co-workers to participate in social responsibility projects. The project can be as big as a company-wide Habitat for Humanity build or as small as individual opportunities to donate cans to a food pantry. Regardless of how employees get involved, their participation demonstrates how invested they are in the company’s culture and overall performance. Managers should be aware, recognize and encourage participation.

Why should this be important to you? Because companies with engaged employees outperform the competition by as much as 202%. With this in mind, managers should chat with employees about their involvement in goodwill activities during 1×1 check-in meetings and quarterly/annual performance reviews. Although you cannot force participation in goodwill programs, you can gauge their likelihood of sating with your firm based on how invested they are in supporting the company culture.

Ingraining goodwill into your company does not have to be time-consuming or costly. By simply tweaking current practices, adjusting a few benefits, asking for help, and encouraging conversations about goodwill, leaders will begin to see a shift in the company’s culture. I encourage you to make the decision to kick off your goodwill program and quickly reap the benefits of a more productive and retained team of employees.

Rachel Hutchisson (@RachelHutchssn) is VP, Corporate Citizenship & Philanthropy at Blackbaud, Inc., a 2,700-person technology company that works exclusively with nonprofit organizations. She built the company’s “give back” function from the ground up, relying on expertise she gained in over two decades of working at the intersection of the business world and the nonprofit sector. Rachel is a member of the #GivingTuesday core advisory team, leads her company’s involvement in the Billion+Change pro-bono initiative, and serves on the boards of the Association of Fundraising Professionals International, The Giving Institute, and the Coastal Community Foundation. She is also a member of the core team that launched TEDxCharleston in 2013. She is a graduate of Dickinson College and received a master’s degree from the University of Missouri School of Journalism.


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