Let me be real for a second: A bake sale inspired this blog post. Seriously. A bake sale inspired a blog because it inspired our company to pull together across departments to help others. And that can lead to powerful internal benefits that companies shouldn’t ignore.
Feeding ATL: Bringing Our Office Together
Be an owner, help others and make meaningful connections. Those values are at the heart of everything we do here at Contact At Once!, a LivePerson Company, and they’re not just “feel good” statements. These values guide how we interact with each other, customers and the community as a whole.
Last year, for example, we kicked off FeedingATL at the Atlanta office. FeedingATL helped provide nutritious meals to over 2,000 food-insecure families in the area. Now, we are ramping up for our second year, raising money first then packing and delivering boxes of food on June 10, 2017. With the help of several sponsors (The Dream Big Foundation, LivePerson, Action Ministries, Precision Printing Professionals and Per Se Media Group), $9 will feed a family of four for about two weeks.
An important added benefit of this charitable effort is that it connects our office in new ways. A few weeks ago, we held a bake sale in the lobby of our office building and raised over $1,300 to pay for more FeedingATL food boxes. From the promotion to the baking and selling, we worked and laughed with teammates from across all departments—people we often don’t interact with on a daily basis. Even the building security guard got in on the action, encouraging other companies to come in and try it out the goodies for sale.
Charitable Efforts for the Win (in More Ways Than One)
Interactions like the above help form tighter bonds, and that extra connectedness can lead to a greater willingness to ask questions and collaborate on other work-specific projects. And all of that can combine into a happier, more engaged and loyal workforce. (I know it does here!)
In fact, according to a study done by Project ROI, a well-designed corporate responsibility program can…
- Increase revenue up to 20%.
- Reduce staff turnover rate up to 50%.
- Increase productivity up to 13%.
- Increase employee engagement up to 7.5%.
Those are pretty appealing numbers when you consider that the 2016 NADA Workforce Study says sales team turnover is 67%. Plus, it can cost a dealership $45,000 every time a salesperson leaves, according to a DrivingSales study. That adds up quickly (and not in a good way). But there are ways to help stop the bleed and building teamwork has a lot to do with it.
How to Get Started
Like the FeedingATL example, volunteering really can help cultivate that teamwork. Whether you run a coat drive, build a house or pack meals, volunteering helps you get to know your co-workers (including those in different departments) which, in turn, builds a sense of community within the workplace. So why wait until the yearly holiday party to mingle sales and fixed ops teams? Try these ideas:
- Find a local charity, from animal shelters to soup kitchens, and ask how you could help.
- Ask your co-workers what they would like to do.
- Promote what you’re doing internally and externally to gather more support, especially for fundraising or finding volunteers within the community.
- Celebrate / thank all the participants afterwards, perhaps by posting pictures on your company’s social pages, within the showroom, etc.
When your company embraces the idea of being part of a team, where what you do counts and everyone succeeds together…it becomes true.