An area I'm sure we all agree with, but putting ideals into practise is a far more difficult affair! For a smaller company defining local community is a simple affair, but as you grow the communities you could be involved with also grows.
What are the true options available? There are the very business orientated routes such as employing local suppliers & employing staff from the local community, but in both these instances there is always the underlying consideration of economics. Why buy local when a supplier from out of area can provide at a lower cost, and what if the staff with the skills you need are not based locally?
From a much more out going stand point you have to look at considerations such as doing work for local charities either at no cost or at a considerable discount. This is an option we have gone down in the past when working for certain charities. Then next option might be supporting local schools in their career programmes, offering work experience to teenagers in half terms breaks or offering talks on the industry in schools (this should possibly be a demise of the RICS or CICES). Finally you could sponsor local events such as fireworks displays,summers fairs, sponsor local leagues, or even a roundabout! The problem with the sponsorship options is the lack of return on an investment - it would generally be done out of sheer good will, with the slim possibility it might lead to more.
For many years I have played table tennis in Medway, Maidstone & Ashford. Currently I am only playing in the Maidstone league for Hillreed Homes. The firm sponsor the local league, cover all the costs of entering their teams, and provide a venue for the home matches. The firm have a very long and successful affiliation with the league, but recent developments mean a nationwide house builder have brought the firm and it will lead to their withdrawal from the league in any capacity. What this means for the league only time will tell, and I'm sure alternative sponsors will be sought to assist the league financially (and in many other ways). What is certainly true is that the league/local community has benefited from the company support, and may suffer as a result. But the support was purely to support the league, there was no true financial benefit to the company beyond a small amount of publicity, and the odd blog!
Perhaps it is any area every business should be required to help in, part of the big community - I seem to be turning conservative!!!!
Food for thought, and make sure you watch out for our first sponsored event!! But for now you can find out more about R L Surveys through our website, or follow us through Facebook, Twitter or Linkedin. Failing that we can always be reached on 01233 800109.