Have you ever thought about how much impact your company could have on the local community? How positively it could affect the business ecosystem and generate more profit? We’re not talking here about how much effort to put to sell your latest products or services. We’re talking about more sustainable practices that could be applied in the longer run.
If your company isn’t yet active in the local community, now is the time to start. Wondering why? In this article, we gathered 4 good reasons that will explain the reasoning behind it. You’ll see it’s not only about showcasing how responsible your company is. It’s also about building beneficial relationships where all involved parties are happy!
Reason 1. Build trust in the local community
A company, regardless of its size, has a considerable impact on the local community. If you want your business to be successful, building trust within that community and connecting with residents, other companies and small businesses is a good place to start. By doing so, it’s possible to impact the local community beneficially and build a healthier business ecosystem.
Companies can do good more effectively than individuals. They simply have more available people and connections to other companies, that themselves have a certain number of employees. They can bring in more revenues, create job opportunities, vitalise the local economy and even empower locals.
For example, Sunnova Energy Corporation is extremely active in helping out local associations in its hometown, Houston. The solar energy provider participates in volunteering for associations that help women who survived domestic violence and children affected by abuse and neglect. The company believes that in this way, it can empower the communities that it serves.
Building trust in the local community is especially recommended for companies that tend to create conflicts because of their nature to influence the lives of residents: electricity providers, airports, real estate developers, etc. Such businesses may provoke conflicts, so it’s highly recommended to mitigate them by showing the will to give back to the community.
Reason 2. Gain social trust
The local community isn’t the only stakeholder to gain trust from. It’s crucial to prove to the public that your company takes social responsibility seriously. You must show it with actions that you mean it.
Transparency and sustainability are nowadays elements that cannot be disregarded when running any business. Gone are the days when people consumed just for the sake of consuming and nowadays. As you have noticed, cause weighs heavily on the buyers’ decisions. The younger generations a.k.a future customers value not only how cool the products/ services are, but also how much companies care about giving back and doing good. According to Forbes, 43% of American Gen-Z value companies that are active in doing good. Also, 69% of these aware consumers are willing to pay more to companies that fairly treat their employees and suppliers.
Since the customers’ awareness is on the rise, so is the investors’ awareness. Therefore, companies must make profits and on top of that, they must show how responsible they are. Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) isn’t anymore something to publish to look respectable, it’s now something mandatory to implement and improve.
Sustainability is related to any long-term practice that makes a business last: attention to the fair recruitment process, promotion of the employees’ wellbeing, responsible manufacture of products and the list goes on. Applying such practices to everyday operations will allow a company to grow by taking care of its natural environment and the local community. If each company takes care of its own surrounding, it’ll be much easier to create a better world.
As we all know, the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals are set for 2030. Paying attention to such goals and showcasing that your company cares for them will allow you to gain the trust of society.
Reason 3. Attract workers that share the same mindset and values
Company culture differs from organisation to organisation and there’s no “one size fits all” solution to attract the best talents. It’s not about the best-skilled talents that companies should think about. It’s rather about who would fit best their company culture.
By being close to the local community, companies can disseminate what kind of culture they promote. That would attract like-minded people to become part of it. Those who resonate with the company culture are more likely to stay longer. In fact, 47% of people say that their incompatibility with the company culture is the principal reason to leave the company. So, if the mismatch doesn’t happen in the first place, employee retention will stay low as well.
Remember that your employees are your company ambassadors and play an important role in connecting your company with the local community. But in the first place, your employees must be engaged. Simply put, employee engagement is all about commitment and enthusiasm that leads ultimately to the company’s growth. Engaged employees are willing to spread to the outside world how nice your company is. They are the most suitable people you’d want to ask for help in interacting with your local community!
Reason 4. Create a healthier and better company culture
The previous reasons why companies need to be part of the local community were focused on the benefits that the connection of both parties would create. In other words, it was about the connection between the company and the external world. We shouldn’t forget though, that companies being active in the local community can also bring benefits to what happens within the organisation.
Let’s say that your employees are given time to volunteer for the local community. They could visit the elderly’s homes to spend time with users, go for a cleanup walk around the parks, or offer to listen to people. By helping others, people can gain better mental health and the feeling that they’re being needed. It’s a way to allow them to find a place where they belong.
Changes at the individual level are not the only perk, you can also expect changes at an organisational level. In a company that values the local community and participates in it, employees are supportive of each other. They are also more trusting and willing to communicate with each other, regardless of departments and hierarchies.
Even better, you can expect active employees to start sharing their volunteering and helping experiences with their peers. This will allow people to realise that the threshold to help – or asking for help – isn’t as high as they’re thinking. In the end, it’ll lead them to gain better mental health both in work life and private life.
Food for thought
Corporate volunteering is one of the best ways of becoming part of the local community, but there are many other things companies can do. Sponsoring local associations and events, sharing on social media what purpose motivates your company, and networking with other members of the community are only a few examples. All these practices can both allow you to be present as a valuable member of the local community and do good for the community.
By participating in the local community, your company acquires the opportunity of building a better reputation. It’s not as flashy as online advertisements and may require more time to sink in. However, it’s a solid way to improve the company’s image and brand awareness. Nowadays, people want to make better choices, so being a responsible company means attending to their needs. You can even think this way: showing social responsibility is being a customer-centric company!
Commu makes it easier for companies to do good. Join us!
Building trust, attracting the best fitting employees, and improving the organisational culture shouldn’t be thought of as separate things. As we’ve seen through this article, they’re all common reasons why companies should be part of the local community. So, if you actively participate in making the community better, it’ll be much easier to achieve such goals rather than tackling them separately.
At Commu, we want to bring individuals, companies, and associations altogether. We believe that help should be easy to ask for anyone, and that also includes companies.
We provide tools to collect data about corporate volunteering, which for example, you could use to showcase your company’s responsibility to your shareholders. Feel free to contact us from our contact form and book an appointment. We can show you how it works!