Giving back to the community gives people the opportunity to help others in need and feel more engaged in their communities. Many companies today encourage giving back and want their employees to volunteer, sometimes even giving them paid time off to do so. As you encourage your coworkers to volunteer, you uphold your values as well as give employees a sense of belonging and a way to bond with each other.
Encouraging volunteering among your team and coworkers is also a great way to ensure they are engaged and motivated at work and also will make them feel pride for where they work. Opportunities for giving back and community service programs have become extremely important for job seekers in today’s market.
7 Ways to Encourage Volunteerism
Here are some tips to help encourage your coworkers to volunteer more.
1. Provide PTO for volunteering
Giving paid time off specifically for volunteering is a great way for employees to participate in volunteer programs. Being able to have their vacation time as well as separate time to help their community is definitely a benefit that will show employees that volunteering is important to your organization.
2. Provide opportunities
Instead of making your coworkers search and find opportunities, make it the norm to have options available every month or so for people to volunteer easily. Have a range of activities so people have options to participate in multiple types of things – such as packing food, picking vegetables, editing resumes, or running in charity marathons. Encourage volunteering as a team-building opportunity or simply a team outing to get everyone together. If you’re in a remote work setting, this also provides a chance for the team to get together and connect in person.
3. Establish partnerships
A good way to focus on volunteerism at the company is to partner with a charitable or nonprofit organization. Do some research and find an organization that fits your values and one that you can support and help long term. This partnership will be a great way to have ongoing volunteer events and opportunities and may also be a good networking opportunity for the company.
4. Organize a fun competition
Nobody can resist a good contest. Set up a competition that involves raising the most money, volunteering more time, or anything else that will keep your teams engaged. This is also where a partnership will help. As you continue to build a relationship with an organization, you can work on programs that help keep your coworkers engaged.
5. Reward for volunteering
Along with a competition, provide rewards and recognition for volunteering. Recognition can be along the lines of shoutouts during meetings or on social media. If budget allows, rewards such as free lunch or gift cards can be a good way to motivate employees to continue volunteering.
6. Make it a team-building opportunity
Bringing the team together to volunteer not only boosts morale but also provides an opportunity for team bonding. Encourage teams to volunteer together and get lunch afterwards to get to know each other better. With so many employees in a remote setting, getting this in-person facetime is a good opportunity to feel more connected to the team. Volunteer work is an ideal way to bring people together for a common cause.
7. Allow for feedback
Every activity can benefit from feedback. This helps you understand which aspects of the program are working and what can be improved. Since you want to encourage your coworkers to participate in volunteer work, it can be a good idea to ask them what would motivate them, what organizations they would like to support, and how the company could improve their volunteer opportunities.
Volunteering is good for any company in many ways, from encouraging team bonding to doing good in the community where you conduct business. Providing activities that encourage giving back and helping others is a great way to show employees your values and what the company deems important along with the business. This will go a long way towards retaining employees and keeping them happy and motivated at your company.
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