I’ve been working in the nonprofit sector for about 23 years, employed by two cultural organizations and as a consultant to myriad others. After serving on nonprofit boards in the 1990s, I felt...Read more »
3 Ways to Be a Better Community Partner
Many business leaders I speak with want their organizations to become more civic minded. We also know that engaging employees in the process can be a be win-win for everyone; I discussed this in my article “Magic 8 Ball Says YES To Volunteerism and Employee Engagement.”
If your business longs to get more involved in the community, here are three ways we’ve found success at Fahrenheit Advisors. (Next time I’ll have some tips for my nonprofit audience about how to engage local businesses – stay tuned!)
#1) Volunteer Your Expertise
More than likely you or your business specializes in a trade or skill that is needed by a nonprofit. At Fahrenheit Advisors, our skills are centered around our business expertise, so it’s natural for us to volunteer our services as CFOs, controllers, or director-level resources. Whether you’re a skilled business leader, a whiz at IT services, or a marketing guru, there’s a nonprofit organization out there who would like to take advantage of your expertise.
#2) Offer Up Meeting Space
If you have ever spent time looking for offsite meeting space, you know that this can be an expensive and time-consuming endeavor. Many community organizations do not have their own dedicated office space, nor do they have resources to channel toward renting space. One tangible way Fahrenheit supports the community is by providing free meeting space for organizations to use. Fahrenheit Advisor’s office space in Scott’s Addition was designed with a hybrid use in mind: to serve the needs of the business as well as those of the community.
#3) Engage Employees in Philanthropic Activities and Events
Rallying your employees around a certain cause can be truly rewarding for everyone involved. We’ve found that there’s nothing like preparing for – and completing! – a 5K with fellow employees. Start simple. Find a race or a food drive or an event to rally your team behind and go for it. Next level: add more fun by asking a creative person in your office design a T-shirt that showcases your culture and wear it to the event! It’s super easy with a site like Spreadshirt.
IT’S IN OUR DNA: MAKE IT A PART OF YOURS
It was a natural progression for the Fahrenheit co-founders to create and fund a new line of business for nonprofits (called Fahrenheit Nonprofit Advisory Services.) Giving back and connecting communities is in our DNA. Why not make it part of yours too?
About the Author
Greg Wingfield is a Managing Director at Fahrenheit Advisors. Greg brings over 40 years of experience in economic development services and non-profit management, including more than 20 years as CEO of Greater Richmond Partnership. Greg has also served as a Senior Fellow in the Wilder School at VCU. Most recently, Greg has provided consulting services to local, regional and economic development groups. Greg leverages his deep experience to guide non-profit organizations in need of fundraising and development coaching, marketing planning, strategic planning, staffing or recruiting guidance and fractional leadership. Learn more about Greg