This year, kick off January by asking yourself not what you can do for your business, but what your business could be doing for others!


Who supports small businesses? Communities do! It is time to recognise their devotion and start giving back.


Charity is an overlooked, underrated way for small business owners to boost their awareness in the community while positively affecting the lives of others.


Start by determining what causes you would like to support. Whether personal or professional, it should relate to your business in some way, ideally.


Involve your team members in the process, from selection to donation. Their awareness of your efforts builds a stronger team, encouraging motivation, teamwork and positive thinking.


Do your homework and investigate charitable organisations before investing. Unfortunately, this is a very important step, as the system is riddled with scammers and frauds.


Making donations is not the only option. Consider throwing a fundraiser, participating in an event, donations of a non-monetary kind, volunteer work, sponsorships, etc.


Organise a car wash, a silent auction, a bake sale or a company run. The ideas do not have to be complicated, simply executable.


Once you have implemented a charitable plan, involve your customers and other vendors and promote your plan in order to garner awareness and encourage additional support.


Set a clear goal and make sure to visualise the progress to keep employees and the community motivated.


Avoid the pot holes on the path to charitable success! Devise a philanthropic structure and incorporate it into the business plan. Laying out guidelines from the get-go will help steer clear of pitfalls.


Consider putting together a committee of team members to lead the way and make executive decisions in order to divvy up the responsibilities of time and effort.


Oh, and don't forget tax deductions for approved charitable donations!