Jun 08 2010

The Soft Side of Business

Helping the needy 

                                              

doesn’t mean

                                         

competitors will 

                                            

eat you for dinner

 

 

  In fact, quite the contrary. When you slow down or stop your business-wheels long enough to reach off your merry-go-round and help some of those who can only afford to stand off to the side and watch you calliope-music your way around in circles, you are investing in your community . . . and ultimately in your own business, if you’re smart enough to make it newsworthy.

“Charity starts at home” isn’t just a sarcastic jab at humor.

But most businesses either fail at trying to make newsworthiness out of nothing, or at thinking that efforts to proclaim newsworthiness out of acts of generosity somehow taints the integrity of the charitable offerings. Both are wrong. First of all, the public is not stupid. People can see through thinly-veiled acts of self-proclaimed greatness with one eye shut and both hands behind their backs.

Don’t invent situations in order to gain favorable news exposure and publicity. Editors typically reject such self-serving efforts, and even when something does manage to slide by and end up getting attention, the public sees it for what it is.

But when your business does something heartfelt to help someone or group of someones, don’t be overly timid about spreading the word. Why? Isn’t that too much like bragging? Doesn’t that rub people the wrong way to be tooting your own horn?

The truth, since you asked (okay I asked for you) is that the more exposure your business gets for having sponsored an employee fundraising for some worthy organization or situation, the more you will have primed the pump to prompt others to follow suit. Then what? Then you will have shoe-horned (have you ever seen a shoehorn?) in even more helpful acts than your own.

The soft side of business — whether it’s charitable fundraising, or giving an employee or supplier or community family the support it needs to get through a crisis, or sponsoring a neighborhood clean-up project, or donating products or services or time, or providing technical or administrative back-up to a local or regional nonprofit organization — can work wonders for business reputation.

People (your customers, clients, patients, and prospects) BUY reputation! Connect the dots.

You haven’t time for all the solicitations at your doorstep? That’s like saying you haven’t enough time to learn time management. Ask for someone in your organization to follow a criteria list you hand off to screen applicants and make periodic recommendations for situations that fit inside the annual or semi-annual or quarterly budget you set and insist on.

When the tax-deductible budget is spent, solicitors go on a waiting list, or apply again next year. Make sure arrangements are made for news release announcements before and after (at least) every event, with content that’s always focused on the benefiting individual or organization, and always urging others to get on the bandwagon (or your merry-go-round!).  Soft is good.

 Hal@BusinessWorks.US  

Thanks for visiting. Go for your goals! God Bless You!

God Bless America, and God Bless Our Troops 

“The price of freedom is eternal vigilance!” [Thomas Jefferson] 

Make today a GREAT day for someone!

No responses yet




Search

Tag Cloud