The 2019 holiday season is just around the corner and, once again, it’s time to plan your year-end giving campaign! This year try focusing on employee participation. Not sure where to start? Look no further – we’ve compiled a checklist to engage your employees in holiday giving.
Step 1 – Consult your Employees.
Gone are the days when the CEO is the only one defining a company’s philanthropic journey. With an increasing amount of forward-thinking millennial leaders entering the workforce, there’s plenty of enthusiasm to harness when it comes to giving back. The key trick is to find community charities and causes that align with both your company’s values and your employees’ values.
Don’t know what your employees value? Ask! Conduct a survey to find out what causes they’re most passionate about, and how they want to give back. Additionally, gather any information from previous giving campaigns. How many employees participated? If you see that some did not participate, find out why. What causes did you support? Figure out if the previous causes align with your current employees’ values and if not, begin your search for different giving opportunities and partnerships.
Finally, reward employees who are the most engaged with your giving campaign by assigning them a leadership role. This can be a short-term position for just the holiday giving campaign or even a long-term role for future charitable initiatives.
Step 2 – Plan your Program.
Receiving feedback from your employees should give you a clear idea about what causes to support and how. Now it’s time to plan! The first step is to search for giving opportunities in your community. Use an online search tool, such as #BrokersOfGood, to identify potential charity partners and cause-related opportunities to support. Identify your charity partners and projects well before launching your program to avoid any stress leading up to the holidays. Make sure to communicate expectations with your charity partner – whether this will be a one-time gift or an on-going gift, and if you’re open to future collaborations with them.
Use an online search tool, such as #BrokersOfGood, to identify potential charity partners and cause-related opportunities to support.
Next, determine the goals of your program. What percentage of your employees do you want to participate? How much money do you want to raise? How many hours of volunteer time are you looking to give to your staff? Ask yourself these questions in order to create realistic giving goals.
Step 3 – Create Buzz about your Program.
So you’ve planned your initiative, determined your goals, and solidified an agreement with your charity partner – you’re now ready to launch the program!
According to the 2015 Millennial Impact Project, 65% of Millennials are more likely to volunteer if their co-workers are participating. Alternatively, that number drops to 44% if it’s just a supervisor that participates.
65% of Millennials are more likely to volunteer if their co-workers are participating.
Therefore, it’s important to encourage your employees to be vocal about their involvement with the program. Ask them to share their stories and experiences through the channels that millennials are most engaged with – social media! Additionally, when launching, communicate the program through a variety of mediums – email, internal communication systems, posters and of course, your company’s social media accounts. A great example of this is a video from the Canadian company Astella to highlight their employee-driven volunteer day “Changing Tomorrow Day.”
Step 4 – Measure & Demonstrate your Impact.
So your program is a success and you’re seeing lots of employee engagement. That’s great! However, the work doesn’t stop here.
Ensure on-going participation and engagement by measuring and demonstrating the impact that your program is making. Remember those initial goals you set? Now is the time when they come in handy. Measure the impact of your program based on the original metrics you established. How close are you to reaching your fundraising goal? How many combined hours have your employees contributed? Ensure that every time your company reaches a giving milestone, it’s acknowledged and celebrated.
Also, reach out to your employees and encourage them to share their giving stories and experiences. Post their stories internally and through your social media channels to keep motivation high.