Why it should be a vital component of your corporate culture

Business owners and entrepreneurs—does your company care? Do your customer service personnel treat your clients with respect, understanding and empathy? Do your employees volunteer their time and talent to better the community or assist an organization?
Then you’re doing it right.
Encouraging your staff to be good citizens by volunteering in the community is not just the right thing to do—it’s smart business. Employing civic-minded individuals and joining them in donating time and resources to worthy causes keeps your company and your community strong. Not only are you contributing to society—you are also raising awareness of your business and building customer and employee loyalty.
At Jarrett Companies, we define ‘civic responsibility’ as giving back to our communities by donating our time, talents, energy and resources to worthwhile causes in our communities and society. It’s one of our core values and part of our corporate culture. We put it into practice by getting involved in volunteer opportunities here in Orrville, across Wayne County, and in our own neighborhoods.
Successful entrepreneurs and business owners start out with the end in mind. They set long-term goals and look at the bigger picture. They get into business not to make some fast cash, but to create something of lasting value. They envision not only building thriving businesses, but creating jobs, providing hard-working families with income and benefits, and growing their communities.
Along the way, they network with like-minded people, give and receive help from other business owners, and make life-long personal and business connections. They build relationships as well as businesses. And they see the value in treating customers, colleagues and employees with dignity and respect.
When your customer has an issue or a complaint, are you indifferent or apathetic? Do you just shrug your shoulders and let them figure it out on their own? Certainly not. You put yourself in their shoes and imagine how you would feel in their situation. You are genuinely empathetic toward them. You determine the problem, and you do everything in your power to make it right. You throw as much time and energy toward the solution as necessary.
Raising funds, volunteering our services, using the resources we have at our disposal—we feel obligated and privileged to help because we know it is the right thing to do. We are in touch with the needs of our community, and we’re part of something bigger than just ourselves.
Get involved. Join a committee, or help coach a team. Collect money, food or clothing items. Volunteer to pick up trash along the roadside. The local Rotary, Exchange Club, and Chamber of Commerce meetings are perfect opportunities to offer your services.
You are giving them your time, which is your most valuable asset. You are giving back to the community you live and work in, and making it a better place. You are helping the less fortunate, the sick, the young and the old. And what you put out into the world, you get back.
Michael Jarrett is founder and president at Jarrett Logistics Systems and PackShipUSA