During my thirty years of working for various sized organizations in a variety of industries, there’s been one activity that has worked consistently well regardless of industry or company size to both create awareness and effect sales growth, and that is the creation of goodwill. But, what I really love as both a marketing professional as well, as the decent human being that I believe myself to be, is that goodwill is good for all. While it helps organizations succeed, it helps the communities that the organization serves prosper, so everybody wins.
: a kind, helpful, or friendly feeling or attitude
As the above definition from Merriam-Webster’s online dictionary supports, I believe creating goodwill is all about being helpful. Since there are many ways to be helpful, there are many ways to create goodwill. I’ve listed below some of the more common examples of how businesses (and, of course individuals themselves) can be helpful, but any organization that really understands and fully participates in the communities it serves, can think of lots of other innovative and unique activities.
- organize a group of employees to volunteer their time to assist with a community event — whether it be helping with preparations for or promotion of the event, or simply helping to staff the event
- solicit a group of employees to pitch in on manual tasks that need to be done at a particular location operated by a non-profit/community organization — such as a homeless shelter, park, or school
- purchase a table/booth at a community event such as a health or street fair, or purchase a table at a breakfast, lunch, or dinner event which senior leaders at your organization can attend to show their support
- donate tangible new or used goods that are on the “wish list” of a particular organization such as new gloves and socks for a homeless shelter or used coats for a coat drive
- donate $$ that can be used as needed by the non-profit/community organization; sometimes, these donations will be reciprocated by the non-profit/community organization via the opportunity to have a display table of informational and promotional items at an event and/or a program booklet ad, or to be listed as a key sponsor on any event promotional materials the community organization produces
I’m sure you’ve found, as I have, that most individuals want to make a difference in their communities. By providing employees with an opportunity to donate or volunteer, you are likely to enhance their engagement — another of the many reasons why goodwill is “good”. And, most non-profit/community organizations are more than willing to share via a press release, an announcement at the podium, their web site, and/or some other activity your organization’s contribution to their success.
I’m always glad to brainstorm with you about what type of goodwill creation activity might be the most effective for your organization as well as best serve the communities in which your organization operates.
Make today the day you do some “Goodwill Hunting” by starting to research upcoming community activities you or your organization might support.