Please Note: this blog originally appeared on Corporate Volunteer Council of Montgomery County's website. See the original piece here.
There are an infinite number of ways giving back is good for your soul – but is it also good for business? With countless examples of companies big and small who have effectively implemented a community involvement program and have seen the positive effects it has on business, we’d say it’s great for business!
As Mortgage Bankers (and CVC members) headquartered in Rockville, MD, the owners of Apex Home Loans knew the company would be able to make a difference in our community, even if just 10% of our employees committed to giving back. This thought led to the launch of our community involvement program, Apex in Action. In the last 5 years, we’ve focused on doing good while doing well, and we want to share our local perspective on how giving back has helped our business.
1. Positive employee morale: One of the most positive changes we’ve seen concerns employee morale. Through supporting organizations our employees support, we’ve fostered an environment which encourages peer support, building stronger bonds between colleagues and a happier workplace.
2. Team building: Twice a month, a group of 16 of our employees gather together in our conference room to pack snacks for children in need. In that hour of time, we work together to accomplish something that makes us feel so good that it barely feels like work. We play music, tell jokes, and catch up on each others lives as we take a break from the busy workday to give back. This bond has only made us closer as we leave the conference room to tackle business.
3. Respect and recognition in the community: By far, one of the coolest aspects of giving back is the recognition we receive from the community. It’s our way of living the local celebrity life. In my own personal experience, I have been stopped by complete strangers while walking my dog who have only heard of Apex through our charitable endeavors and wanted to tell me how great the company is. This experience was indescribable—the closest feeling I can conjure to characterize it is overwhelming pride.
4. Great networking: In working with great local organizations and volunteering with different members of the community, we’ve met some fantastic people who have become close business partners and friends, too! We’ve built relationships with other local businesses looking to make the same change in the community we are, and we have been able to do business with like minded companies.
5. New skill sets: Before our partnership with Habitat for Humanity this year, I would have never been able to tell a borrower how to insulate a home. My colleague KP would tell you he never thought he would teach a class of 6th graders. Or better yet, that teaching a class of 6th graders would help him become a stronger leader and communicator day-to-day. In volunteering our time, we’ve expanded our skill sets in ways we simply didn’t expect.
These are just some of the ways giving back has been advantageous for us not only personally, but in business too! Not sure how to implement a community involvement program of your own? The CVC of Montgomery County should be your first resource for getting started.