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Charity starts at work - Community matters

Wednesday, January 08, 2014   By Mike Reddy


Kick off the year by asking yourself not what you can do for your business, but what your business could be doing for others!

Who supports your small business? Your community does! It is time to recognise their devotion and start giving back.

Charity is an overlooked, underrated way for small business owners to boost their awareness in the community while positively affecting the lives of others.

As an experienced business coaching firm we understand we have a lot to offer the community. I'm proud of what we contribute to non-profit groups and I know we make a difference. That's very rewarding on so many levels and I know you could achieve great things as well.

Start by determining what causes you would like to support. Whether personal or professional, your chosen charity should relate to your business in some way.

Involve your team members in the process, from selection to donation. Their awareness of your efforts builds a stronger team, encouraging motivation, teamwork and positive thinking.

Do your homework and investigate charitable organisations before investing your precious business resources. Unfortunately, this is a very important step, as the system is riddled with scammers and frauds.

Making donations is not the only option to business based charity. Consider throwing a fundraiser, participating in an event, donations of a non-monetary kind, volunteer work, sponsorships, etc.

Organise a car wash, a silent auction, a bake sale or a company run. The ideas do not have to be complicated, simply executable.

Once you have implemented a charitable plan for your business, involve your customers and other vendors and promote your plan in order to garner awareness and encourage additional support.

As in all of our business coaching programmes, I encourage you to set a clear goal and make sure to visualise the progress to keep employees and the community motivated.

Avoid the pot holes on the path to charitable success with your business! Devise a philanthropic structure and incorporate it into the business plan. Laying out guidelines from the get-go will help steer clear of pitfalls.

Consider putting together a committee of team members to lead the way and make executive decisions in order to divvy up the responsibilities of time and effort.

My final coaching tip: Don’t forget to find out about tax concessions!

Mike Reddy is a Chartered Accountant, business coach and advisor helping businesses in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Gold Coast to easily increase their profits and cash flow. He is currently President of the North Sydney Chamber of Commerce, a Regional Councillor for Sydney North East and a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants Sydney leadership team. As well as advising businesses, Mike presents business development seminars and webinars and is regularly contacted by the media to comment on small business matters. You can connect with him on Facebook, Twitter and Google+.