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  • Carolyn Keller

Giving Back and Getting More

What if by focusing on your community, you could give back while deepening relationships, attracting recognition, and making a big impact?

2020 was tough. Our businesses faced and continue to face uncertainties that can make us feel stressed, anxious, and stretched thin. Crisis can be unnerving, but it also has the ability to bond communities together, spark innovation, and inspire change. Your business would not exist without the community around you. What if by focusing on your community, your team became closer, your relationships deeper, and the world took more notice in your company?


Let’s start with resilience, the ability to absorb stress and snap back from disturbances. In any crisis, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) identifies four stages of emergency management: mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery. We are all in some stage of this cycle at all times, even if we don’t recognize it. Many think that resilience kicks in during post-disaster recovery, but the truth is you are building resilience at every stage of the emergency management process. Resilient people are problem-solvers who typically have a sense of control over their lives, are able to adapt easily, and have a strong support network. Similarly, resilient companies are guided by purpose that allows them to make quick, thoughtful decisions, continually learn, and cultivate strong relationships with their teams and the community.

Purpose is your core reason for being. It’s about why you started your business. If you want to understand your purpose, ask yourself: In what ways does my business help people? How does my service provide value? What do I want this business to be known for? You know what values are at the heart of your business. Let your purpose elevate and define you. And it’s about time that you share that purpose with others. In a 2016 Neilson survey, over 50% of people say that a “brand with a community commitment” was a purchasing driver.


To quote Simon Sinek, “People don’t buy what you do; they buy why you do it.”


This is true not only for your community, but for your team too. According to a 2015 Gallup poll, employees are 3 times more likely to stay and be engaged with an organization when they connect with its purpose. This means that when you define your purpose, you are more likely to pull in and keep generous talent who want to make a difference.


Time to bring your community deeper into the mix. Think local. Your community makes your business thrive. In turn, building up our local communities strengthens resiliency through creating deeper bonds and networks of support. This can take many philanthropic forms - fundraisers, donation collections, community service, and so much more. On average these types of corporate philanthropy programs have the ability to raise 5 times more than traditional fundraising methods. They are impactful!


Think about the last time you gave your time, energy, or money to something that you care about. How did it make you feel? When you are passionate about your community it shows and people take note. Even though you may be hesitant to tell the good you do, sharing your story raises even more awareness of the community you support and people feel good when they connect with your business.


Doing good is intentional and when you decide to give back, your budget, marketing, and team need to be aligned to multiply your impact. Your roadmap needs to reflect your purpose so that you can give back while deepening relationships, attracting recognition, and making a big impact.

Doing good is intentional and when you decide to give back, your budget, marketing, and team need to be aligned to multiply your impact. Your roadmap needs to reflect your purpose so that you can give back while deepening relationships, attracting recognition, and making a big impact.


This is a reminder that you make a difference. Even in tough times you define the steps you take. It isn’t just about making it through. It’s about supporting each other, giving back, and coming back stronger. You’ve got this!


Want to see how well your brand, team, and impact work together? See which attributes of impact help your organization make a difference here!

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