As a business flourishes and thrives, it can be a great asset to a community. Jobs are created and business is brought to an area. While these things are quite good, there is more that companies can do intentionally, and part of that includes reaching out and serving neighborhoods that are close by.
Alive and Available
A number of people may think a business in a community does not really care about others. A company may bring in a lot of business over the course of a year, but that is about all that it entails. Sponsoring a float in a parade or purchasing a raffle ticket for a fundraiser is nice, but these gestures often are overlooked. It is important for a business to reach out to a neighborhood or a community. In a way, locals do not know the company cares about them. All they know is that it provides goods or services for a price. Sometimes, it can help a business to meet with community leaders or visit with a council member about the needs of the area. Businesses can be surprised about the needs that are around it, but owners and executives have an idea of how the neighborhood is doing around them.
While reaching out to the community and learning about needs is very good, it is important to follow through in terms of helping those in need and giving back to the community. Consider having a free barbeque for everyone in a neighborhood or community. Take time and visit with locals who were drawn to the event as a result of the free food that was offered. Another idea is to meet the need of an area. Invest in new equipment at the local playground. Give away treats and prizes as an entry in the local parade. These acts of kindness are intentional and demonstrate that a company or foundation cares about people. There are numerous businesses that do this, such as Palmco. Although there can be costs in terms of helping those in need, words cannot describe how people feel when they have been helped.
It can be easy to talk about helping out a community, but it takes more than discussing potential outreach. Focus on doing one project or one item for the first year. If it works out well, it can be increased the next year.