If you ask a thousand different business owners why they’ve hosted charity events, you’ll probably get a thousand different reasons. The causes they support are diverse and the needs they fulfill are great. Entrepreneurs are unique individuals with stories and connections that influence their causes. As humans, we are drawn to causes that are important to us or impacted us or those we love.
Hosting an event for a great cause is a fantastic way to bring communities together. This gives meaning to what we do and brings our tribe together. But it’s important for us to remember the most notable reason -- the human impact. Here are four reasons you should consider it:
1. You can better lives.
This motivation is at the heart of hosting a charitable event: It’s an opportunity to make a positive impact on someone’s life. We recently hosted our fifth annual “Go Jump in the Lake” event to raise money for “Give Back a Smile” -- an organization that has provided more than $15 million in pro bono dental work to help domestic violence survivors erase the damage their abusers did to their smiles. It’s about replacing and repairing teeth; it’s about giving people back their confidence and self-esteem. The real impact is changing someone’s life for the better. It’s a cause that is near and dear to my heart. It’s about giving back these women who have lost smiles, confidence and the ability to get a job. A smile speaks all languages.
2. Inspirational recall.
Your charitable cause can reconnect you with what inspires you professionally in an instinctual way. When I was a kid, I had a bicycle accident that cost me a few front teeth, and my mom couldn’t afford to replace them for a few years. When I had that wreck, I received compassionate care from the dental team, which is what inspired me to become a dental professional. I literally went head first into a career in dentistry. I’m still a practicing hygienist in addition to running DentalPost; it keeps me connected and the reward your patients give you is priceless. Money can’t buy that. DentalPost’s “Give Back a Smile and Go Jump in the Lake Party” is my small impact I have to make a difference. My purpose is to give my gift away. That’s why we are here.
3. Reinforce your core mission.
No matter what kind of business you run, you’re creating a product or service that helps someone in some way and makes their lives easier. Hosting an event to support your cause can emphasize and reinforce the importance of your core mission. For example, my company, DentalPost, creates a community for 750,000 dental professionals. Our mission is to make dental professionals’ lives easier. By helping practices and professionals connect and grow in their careers, we work to improve the profession and help our users love their job. Through supporting Give Back a Smile, we directly link our charitable activities to our core mission- to bring the dental community together and help them use their gifts to serve patients better. If you link your cause to your business, it will add only beauty to your mission.
4. “You get back more than you give.”
No matter how much money you raise to help people, you’ll get back more -- not in a monetary sense, but in the incredible sense of satisfaction you’ll feel knowing you made a difference in the lives of people in need. One person who received help through Give Back a Smile described it as follows: "Now, as I wake each morning, I greet the day with a renewed sense of hope and joy, strength and purpose, then...a smile spreads across my face that is so bright, I feel like it could light up the whole world." As an entrepreneur, it’s within your power to touch someone’s life in such a profound way, and the rewards are amazing.
The benefits an entrepreneur gains from supporting a worthy cause are unlimited and include advantages as diverse as building a brand to getting a tax break. Benefits like raising your company’s profile or securing a write-off pale in comparison to making a difference in someone’s life.
Related: Why Philanthropy Is Good Business
As Uncle Ben told Peter Parker -- also known as Spider-Man -- “With great power comes great responsibility.” Entrepreneurship confers great power, even if your bottom line is still catching up with your ambitions. By hosting a charitable event, you can use that power for good. And, I firmly believe in doing just that.