Growing up in a household where volunteering was a way of life it was only nature that it too would become part of my company culture. I was raised with a very clear understanding that when you have, you give to others. Whether it be money, time, or compassion the reality of volunteering is that you get more out of it than what you give.
As a business owner, I am constantly trying to find innovative ways to keep my team motivated and dedicated to my mission. About 7 years ago I started a “Dedication Program” to highlight a local non-profit organization every quarter where Google reviews and Facebook likes drive the amount of the donation given to the selected organization. Each member of my team can nominate a non-profit which in turn educates our team about organizations we may not otherwise be familiar with. It has been a great way to bring my team together while supporting our community.
Last year, when I received the invite to send a couple of my team members to the "Get Involved Collier! Volunteer Expo" I was elated. I thought, what a great way to exposure my team to so many great organizations, all within a couple of hours. The day following the Expo I walked into my office to about 50 brochures and business cards laid out on my desk. But more importantly I was greeted by 2 very enthusiastic team members eager to share their experience and passion for the non-profits they were introduced to. They excitedly told me all about Well-Fit girls and later in the week we unanimously selected them as our next quarter Dedication Program recipient. My team’s enthusiasm did not end there. We continue to discuss our next opportunities for volunteerism weekly and one of my newest team members just completed her volunteer orientation at Naples Therapeutic Riding Center.
We are fortunate to have a Chamber and the Leadership Collier Foundation that values leadership not only on an executive level but also brings attention to the importance of employment satisfaction and encourages volunteerism within corporate environments. Understanding that employees who believe in the mission of the company they represent and having leaders who show them they care, by encouraging growth outside of the organization will create an environment of exponential success.
My focus has never been on how giving back to the community will look for my business. It is simply part of who I am, so it only makes sense that I would build this into my business model. I must admit that having my team represent our company through volunteerism has had a significant impact not only on our team internally but the external benefits of branding my company in such a manner has been a welcomed result. I find myself looking to do business with others who share the same passion of giving back. From spending time tutoring kids with New Horizons to Running a 5K with Girls on the Run we have met incredible people who have expressed their appreciation to my team for our support.
I live strongly by my personal mission statement, “Choose Building Character Over Building Wealth”, a quote from my mother that I discovered after her passing and this has shaped the way I run my business. I am blessed with a highly passionate team who finds great value in helping others. I have realized over the years that community involvement offers team members both personal satisfaction and development by providing an experience to be part of the connection between corporate and personal values. Team building in this manner fits our company culture as we are truly dedicated to our community.
Tiffany Lehman is the President of Insurance Source of Naples. She is a graduate of Growing Associates in Naples™ (GAIN™), chair of Youth Leadership Collier™, and serves on the Leadership Collier Foundation™ Board.