In a session at TD Ameritrade’s 2016 National LINC conference in Orlando, attendees discussed ways they were positively interacting with their communities and the benefits to their businesses.
The session was led by Jennifer Hammond and Tara Valentino-Maher of TD Ameritrade’s community affairs division.
Firms that want to build a community outreach or social responsibility program should identify what their community needs and what their employees are interested in, and focus on how those two areas intersect with the company’s priorities.
Community involvement is a way to drive engagement with employees, and is good business from a reputation standpoint. “As you think about the bigger picture, you can take your priority as a firm, and take what the community’s needs are and find that great sweet spot that helps you connect with your clients,” Valentino-Maher said.
She asked attendees to share how they were using their “time, talent or treasure” to make an impact in their community.
One attendee described his work with Habitat for Humanity. Another attendee said instead of having a holiday party, his firm decided to have a group shopping trip to buy presents for kids at a local hospital.
Another said his firm focuses on volunteering by offering quarterly opportunities for employees to give a day at local charities, and also makes a corporate donation that employees can contribute to through a payroll deduction that has about 60% employee participation.
“The good will that you [build] in your communities can help drive reputation, your business; it’s really helping your clients understand who you are as a company,” Hammond said.