5 Reasons Volunteering Is a Win-Win Cultural Value
Companies spend time and money to create company culture and benefits programs to attract the best of the best for their hiring needs. But one place a business may overlook investing in is volunteer programming.
Here at Kinetic, we take a holistic and informal approach to providing our staff members support in their personal and professional development, knowing that the end result is a happier, higher-performing team member. Since the early days, Kinetic has provided the flexibility and opportunity for each employee to pursue their passions, whether that is competing in a charity 5K, organizing a coat drive, or even traveling across the globe to work with disadvantaged children in Africa. And Kinetic reaps the rewards.
Recently I set off on my second trip to Uganda, Africa, to continue building infrastructure for an NGO that serves abandoned and orphaned children and their community that is heavily affected by HIV and sickle cell anemia. After two long weeks, more than 16,800 miles traveled (round trip) and 80 hours of travel time, I came home with experience and expressions of gratitude from the children and staff that I worked with in the orphanage. I have been volunteering with AIDSpirit USA since before I started at Kinetic and have valued the support from the Kinetic team for my passion.
Just one day of jet-lag recovery taken, I was feeling a little out of whack on my first day back. But when I walked into the office with big warm hugs from my colleagues and smiles from a team that supports my volunteerism and takes a genuine interest in the work I do outside of the office, I felt grateful.
I am fortunate enough to work in a place that values each individuals’ personal pursuits related to volunteering and nonprofit work, and I think my everyday job benefits from my endeavors. The culture we live here at Kinetic translates into some mutually beneficial outcomes from supporting extracurricular work/life balance and our passions that keep the team happy and personally fulfilled. I love how this creates a team of professionals who apply their enthusiasm and energy to their everyday work.
Here are five reasons why encouraging your staff to volunteer (and maybe even giving them opportunities to do it) creates company cultural benefits:
Working with other community members creates a place for personal and professional relationship development. Your staff can find mentors and possibly even discover business development opportunities for your company. Encouraging individual growth will spark company growth. Kinetic’s flexible schedules allow for team members to attend community-event luncheons, organize nonprofit fundraising and awareness events, and be integral members on organizational committees and boards. What better place to be than at an event with like-minded people, many you have never met, to practice that oh so important elevator speech about Kinetic. The relationships with clients are important at Kinetic, and finding new business through a channel of aligned passions gives us a chance to start on the right foot with a new client, a common connection.
2. Develop, hone and sharpen valuable skills
These volunteering opportunities are the perfect place to use what your team does for your company in new avenues, driven with personal passion. This also creates another place to practice, to learn, to be every day greater. Those experiences filter back into their work, their performance, and the company will reap the rewards. While in Africa, I was able to apply my hands-on experience in operations and project management to help the orphanage with data collection and accounting practices.
3. Energize your team
Supporting your team members’ passions can give them opportunities to come to work rejuvenated and inspired, which equals an increase in job performance. It’s good for everyone’s health. Though I was not on a vacation in Africa, my heart returned full and happy, and our whole team felt the joy.
4. Team building
Opportunities for your company and your team to support one another, which is an intrinsic Kinetic cultural value at the center of our day to day lives, build an environment of every day greater (our favorite motto). Team building for a cause is cool. Giving the staff ample space and time to share things they care about for the greater good also builds relationships among team members, finding common ground around investing in our communities and each other.
5. It feels good
Positioning your company to help your team succeed in life creates a positive environment of good morale throughout your company. Cultivating gratitude through the happiness derived in giving back boosts positivity as a whole. Billings offers a variety of opportunities for Kinetic to connect our team to nonprofit sponsored walks/runs, and we work on putting together events and teams throughout the year for our company to participate in.
For more reasons why investing in your team is a good idea, we recommend reading these articles:
Ten Professional Development Benefits of Volunteering