Why Philanthropy: Training that Gives Back

Lain Hensley

Companies thrive only if they create value. What does "value" mean? How do organizations transform "value" from a lofty word to a concept that sticks? The key is to fully engage the employees. Employees must feel like the most valuable component of the business; they are the foundation, after all.

To accomplish that, there is the age old tradition of team building. It motivates, instills confidence, and sends an emotional rush through those who attend. Does it last? Do the ropes courses and motivational speakers offering the "warm and fuzzy" effect have a positive enough impact on employees to enhance the company? While that answer is hard to know for certain, philanthropic training, a growing trend in corporate workshops, impacts attendees far beyond the one day away from the office.

Philanthropic training is a rising trend because it makes participants feel good about everything. They’re reminded they can give back, show their employer is invested in a cause, and that their contributions go further than the room they’re in for the afternoon.

Having a philanthropic component to training touches people at a visceral and emotional level, providing an enriching experience that instills a deep learning. Giving back ends up giving just as much to the catalyst as it does to the receiver.

Odyssey Teams saw the potential of philanthropic team building and training right away. It’s safe to say that once someone feels proud and good about their work and the place they work, production continues to improve.

Philanthropic training results in a team creating something that changes lives and improves the world. It reminds people that they are accountable and proactive. They then make decisions and take action with a stronger leadership perspective. In our programs people see and experience what the latent potential of 30 pieces of metal and plastic can turn out to be: a life changing tool, put together with care and thoughtfulness.

Connecting through doing good shifts moods from a momentary "we have to get this done" to "we want to get this done." It provides a positive common experience that emphasizes collaboration as the desired result of training. And creating "good" together increases morale as a whole.

Pride is the essence of productivity. When you feel good about something and are honored to be connected to or a part of it, you’re going to tap into your creative side, put forth that extra effort, and the connections felt create loyalty that pulls the package together. You see that the things you do, the things you create, have long term effects that make a difference.

If you give your team the value of knowing what they do carries on, has the impact of compassion and benefits well being, the team will continue to offer value to your company far beyond one day of team building. We love feeling good about what we do. If what we do together as a team has a measurable, real-world impact, we will likely invest more heavily in the outcome. It’s just plain human emotions.