PART 1 of 2:
Does your organization or small business give to charity? Do you have a special cause that is important to you? An LA times article points that charitable giving is “on a roll” in small business. But are you participating?
There are a number of reasons to give charitably. First of all, I think we can assume that most people and small businesses who give charitably do so out of genuine concern and care. Sure, there are those who do it for exploitation or egotistical reasons. If you are a Kingdom business, you know the dilemma – do you give charitably and even share your vision with others, or do you wrestle with letting your left hand know what your right hand is doing (Mt 6:3 from the Bible)?
David Frey, in a recent post on his website, says this:
Many savvy small businesses are affiliating themselves with charities to market their businesses. Not only is it a primary means for developing a powerful network but also it helps others in the process. People like to associate themselves with businesses that support causes, which help disadvantaged people in a meaningful way.
At 1429 Creative, the Marketing Twins refer to our stewardship vision as doing “GREATER THINGS”. On our stewardship page on our company’s site, we like to encourage small businesses to do such things in a variety of ways:
- Sharing your success to impact your community and the world.
- Rallying your team behind a passion greater than your organization itself.
- Differentiating your organization by focusing on selfless acts of community service.
- Generously giving back of your resources so others can move forward.
If you are genuine in your concern for the charities or causes that you support, I don’t think you need to worry about your customers thinking you are arrogantly bragging. We live in a generous nation (maybe not generous enough, but still, we’re by-and-large a giving culture when we see real needs). I believe when you act responsibly with what you have received, your customers and prospective customers will appreciate your willingness to use your resources to benefit others. Just don’t give to that end: don’t give to impress. Give out of your heart and a generous spirit and you will receive the proper recognition as a secondary benefit (the first benefit comes from giving and helping others). Tax deductions are another side benefit, but I would implore you to make sure that’s not your primary reason. You will not receive the true benefit and blessing of your giving if that is your primary motivation. Your generosity won’t inspire anyone and your customers will see right through it (authenticity speaks volumes!). Give to give. Give to participate more responsibly in your local community and the world. Doing GREATER THINGS is not equivalent to GETTING TAX DEDUCTIONS.
Stay tuned in a couple of days and I will outline what the Marketing Twins are doing at 1429 Creative in the way of GREATER THINGS.
* In the comments, let’s hear YOUR practical ideas on giving. What are YOU doing in your corporate giving? Is your small business or organization giving to a certain cause? Remember, it’s not always about money. You could be giving your TIME as well to various projects. This is not boasting; it is an opportunity to learn how to give better. Please offer a link to any sites that you think speak positively to small businesses about giving.
1429 Creative is a faith-based creative team in Fort Worth, Texas.
Great post! Here’s a great article that reinforces the GREATER THINGS philosophy: http://tinyurl.com/6k2ejd
As a strategic philanthropy expert who works with small businesses to create their giving program, you can read more in my newly released book:
Small Businesses Give Big: Why charitable giving is a great business strategy.
Thanks for your self-promotion. You have an interesting site/blog – next time, try adding to the discussion as well. It makes it much more enjoyable for the community.