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being local is just more than an address. It is acting locally by being involved and making a difference in the community. It¹s a great way for our team to bond while improving our community.”

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The Business of Giving Back.

Chances are good that your company has been approached several times to support various local projects or causes. Say yes! In fact, if you haven’t been asked or haven’t found a cause that is the right fit for your business, contact your local chamber of commerce for ideas. Using your company’s resources in support of community service has several benefits that reach far beyond your bottom line.

University Office Technologies President Kevin Van Kannel believes that “being local is just more than an address. It is acting locally by being involved and making a difference in the community. It¹s a great way for our team to bond while improving our community.”

His Ann Arbor, Michigan company sponsored Ypsilanti P.R.I.D.E. Day for the third year on Saturday, May 21. This community-wide event fosters community pride and encourages local business growth by creating a clean and welcoming environment. 500-1200 volunteers, including the nearly 30 University Office Technologies employees, spend the morning picking up litter, painting, planting flowers and otherwise beautifying the Ypsilanti community.

You will see in the photos below that 27 employees from UTEC rolled up their sleeves and worked from 9 a.m. until noon at the Ypsilanti Recreation Park Complex Community Center and Rutherford Pool.

Once you identify the best local causes that make sense for your business, as University Office Technologies did, the real outreach begins. Your employees, customers and community will benefit on several levels.

Many people, especially millennials, consider a company’s community involvement before applying for positions. Similarly, job satisfaction increases and corporate loyalty is strengthened when employees can lend their skills toward a philanthropic cause. When employees step outside their traditional roles and work together in new ways, overall teamwork is enhanced. Mr. Van Kannel has found the Ypsilanti P.R.I.D.E. Day “to be a worthwhile project and one that our employees take great pride in participating. It’s a great way for our team to bond while improving our community.”

Your customers also feel good supporting businesses that support them. Being a socially responsible business builds mutual respect with your community. Traditional “word of mouth” has moved online via social media. Creating goodwill among customers can be the best viral marketing campaign, but it must be earned.

Of course, the most important aspect of corporate social responsibility is the actual good work accomplished for the greater community. Your contribution will make your community a better place to live while giving you a stake in its future beyond your business. It’s also an important chance to meet and network with other influential leaders in your area. Building these types of connections can prove invaluable for future opportunities.

Regardless of what project or cause you choose to support, a stronger community benefits everyone. When it comes to corporate philanthropy, the real bottom line shifts from profits to people.

 

 

 

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UTEC staff and team members hard at work on a beautiful Sprint Saturday morning at the 2016 Ypsilanti Pride Day Community event.