Does volunteering improve employee engagement?

by Brian Sodoma

Like many paint pros this time of year, Joe Campbell, is figuring out how to handle the busy season. But the co-owner of Arizona Painting Company in the Metro Phoenix area is also in the middle of coordinating a summer event called ‘Paint It Forward,’ where his team gives away a $5,000 paint job to a family in need.

“Our whole team reads the top nominations and we vote together on which family is the most deserving. This summer will be our fourth year and every year gets better,” Campbell said. “Our community supports us and we feel it’s incredibly important to give back to those around us.”


Campbell’s company gives at the more typical times of year too, holding turkey drives at Thanksgiving that that often yield more than 100 turkeys, and toy drives at Christmas. The efforts have a noticeable impact on employee morale, he adds.

“Our crews feel like they are part of something bigger, and each year our painters look forward to these times when we can help those around our community,” he added.

Campbell is onto a good thing, as more and more consumers are on the lookout for companies doing right in the world, and the word on the street is that one of the best ways to get employees engaged in your business is through volunteering together.

According to the 2017 Gallup research report, State of the Global Workplace, 85% of employees are either not engaged or actively disengaged at work. That’s a serious problem when it comes to productivity. At the same time, there’s research that says, volunteering together can help matters. According to a survey from the Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship, “Nearly 90% of the companies that measure the connection between volunteer participation and employee engagement found a positive correlation between participation and engagement scores.”


For his Paint it Forward efforts, Campbell’s largest paint supplier, Sherwin-Williams, donates the paint and Campbell’s team brings the labor and other materials. This year, for National Painting Week (May 25 – June 4), Sherwin-Williams and its employees were involved in 200 community repaints.

“Painting can and does have a positive emotional impact, and homeowners are interested in painting projects, underscoring the opportunity in the marketplace for professionals,” said Jeff Winter, VP of residential marketing for Sherwin-Williams. “National Painting Week is the perfect occasion for contractors and builders across the country to highlight their expertise and leverage their skills to benefit both their business and the community.”

Not to mention the relationships they have with their employees.

To learn more about employee retention and other issues painting professional face, visit

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