“What Gives!?” — Are You a Giving Organization?

Contributed by:  John Nolan, Consultant, TayganPoint Consulting Group

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world.  Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”
– Margaret Mead

As we become a more global society with many organizations operating across city, state and country borders it is important to address how corporate philanthropy has become part of the equation. Many organizations give monetary donations to charities for the tax write off and the short blurb for their annual report, but true involvement by the organization and its employees can have deep positive effects that go well beyond the act itself.

Attracting New Talent
Any organization that is looking to grow and bring in new talent should consider if its culture and values support giving, volunteering and community involvement.   The next generation of the workforce “Millennials” take this principle to heart and are using it to guide both their spending and employment decisions.   According to the recent Millennial Impact Report, 75 percent of young people donated to causes last year and 63 percent said they gave their time to volunteer. This translates to employment as well where this generation is looking at “corporate embrace and prioritization of philanthropy as a central tenet of the employee experience.2“ “This is the reason why, one-third of Millennials surveyed said that their companies’ volunteer policies affected their decision to apply for a job, 39% said that it influenced their decision to interview, and 55% said that such policies played into their decision to accept an offer.”  For companies to attract top talent they need to be involved in giving at all levels within the organization.

Team Building
Volunteer work and projects provide a unique opportunity for team building that cannot be found inside the office.  Allowing employees the chance to come together and work on a project can provide a great avenue for building a team.  Corporate volunteer projects naturally create a positive team-building experience for participants.  Research shows that strong teamwork has a significant positive effect on employee performance.  Corporate giving offers employees the opportunity to support their community while still engaging employees in developmental and team building activities.

Employee Engagement
As employee engagement increases and employees are engaged in what they do, they are more likely to participate and stay with an organization. Research has shown that employees with high engagement deliver better results for their organizations and have increased tenure. The interesting aspect is what can drive this engagement.  “A key driver of Employee Engagement has been reported to be an employee’s perception of the organization’s values. Without a positive feeling about the values of the organization, employee engagement will likely remain low.”  Once again corporate giving can allow an organization to define its values, engage its employees and better both its community and the organization itself at the same time.

Are you a giving organization?  Do you work for a giving organization?   If not, what gives?


3 thoughts on ““What Gives!?” — Are You a Giving Organization?

  1. Joy Taylor

    Love the title of this blog posting. Truly, “what gives?”

    I personally believe (like many), the more you give, the more you receive. And it doesn’t even matter how you choose to give, it is just important to do so. Find a way, make a way….give “your” way.

  2. Wade Peters

    Great insight into how your organization should approach corporate philanthropy and charitable donations.

  3. Adam Berman

    Great article and to the point. More and more, potential applicants are interested in our corporate philanthropy efforts and individual commitment to causes as they make decisions on where to work.


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