Choosing the right charity partner for your painting business
Even in the pandemic, there are still many inspiring stories out there about people and businesses helping those in need. And painting companies who support community charities can enjoy numerous benefits from the experience, such as a positive image among locals, strong employee morale—and even finding and recruiting employees can be easier, says Diane Walsh, VP of Market & Channel Development for Shurtape Technologies, makers of FrogTape brand Painter’s Tape.
If you’re new to working with charitable organizations, are uncertain about which ones to partner with, or are considering new charities to support this holiday season and beyond, Walsh offers a few insights to help you find the right community partner.
CONSIDER ALIGNMENT, LOCAL NEEDS
Walsh says it’s important for a charitable organization to be ‘philosophically aligned’ with your company, or have shared values and codes of conduct. But be careful about supporting organizations who bring politics into their messaging. It could be potentially polarizing with company employees or even your customers, Walsh cautions.
Some painting business owners look at the specific challenges of their local community and seek out organizations that work to solve those challenges. For example, if homelessness is an issue in your area, you can support a food bank, shelter or larger nonprofit that allocates funds to these charities. You can volunteer time, donate money, or offer painting services.
“Aim for recognizable organizations who do impactful work but don’t historically have the kinds of operating budgets that allow for infrastructure improvements,” Walsh said. “For example, you can put a fresh coat of paint on your neighborhood Big Brothers Big Sisters organization or help with an improvement project for your area Red Cross headquarters.”
GIVING DOESN’T NEED TO INVOLVE PAINT
Offering painting services is a great way to give, Walsh added, but designating volunteer days where your team helps out a local charity can be just as powerful. And if you allow employees to take paid time off to support an organization, this can be a powerful perk that contributes to both positive employee morale and company image.
“Alternatively, you could create inroads for your employees by partnering with a specific charity or two to which they can give their time,” Walsh noted. “It can be anything from delivering food for Meals on Wheels to cleaning up city blocks to helping with data entry at a community library.”
ASK YOUR CUSTOMERS
If you’ve never partnered with a community organization in the past and are unsure of which organization is a fit for you, consider asking your customers.
Walsh gives the example of Catchlight Painting, in Boston, which has been in the community for more than 20 years, routinely asking customers for ideas about charitable organizations to support. The contractor even has a page on his website dedicated to customer charity suggestions.
“That’s an example of good community support that comes with the fringe benefit of good PR,” she added.
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