7 Ways Your Startup Can Positively Impact the Community

Group of businesspeople holding arms in a circle.

Giving back to the community that helped make their company successful is an important goal for many startup founders. Aside from simply donating to charitable causes, though, many startups struggle to find actionable opportunities to improve the communities where they do business. 

Let’s take a look at seven actions your startup can take to leave an impact on the local community and help improve the lives of those around you.

How Startups Can Help the Community

There are a variety of different ways that startup companies can go about giving back to the communities that supported them from the beginning. If you are looking for creative ways to help your community now that your startup is in a position to do so, here are seven great ideas to consider:

1. Encourage Your Employees to Volunteer

Most startup owners think of their company’s financial resources first when it comes to finding ways to give back to the community. However, your company’s human resources can be equally valuable. There are several ways that you can go about encouraging your employees to volunteer. Hosting volunteering events on company time, creating initiatives that reward employees for volunteering on their own time, and simply raising awareness about volunteer opportunities within your community are a few options to consider. 

However you go about it, though, channeling your human resources toward charitable causes can be a powerful way to positively impact your community.

2. Support Other Local Startups

As a startup owner, chances are that you are intimately familiar with how challenging it can be in the early stages of founding and growing a company. If you’ve made it through this challenging period and are actually generating sustainable revenue, why not reach out a helping hand to other local startups that are still struggling to get their footing? 

Support for local startups can take plenty of different forms. Taking the time to mentor startup founders is one great way to provide the support that so many local founders desperately need. Seeking out partnerships with other startups is another opportunity that can be beneficial for the greater community as well as your own business.

3. Donate Your Products

In addition to donating cash to charitable causes, donating your company’s products can, in some cases, be a great way to give back to the community. Whether or not this is a good option for your company ultimately depends on the type of products you offer. A startup that sells project management software to other companies, for instance, probably isn’t going to find donating its products to be a very impactful way to help the community. If your company sells any type of product that can be of use to those in need, though, donating those products to charitable causes in your community can be a great alternative to simply donating cash. 

It’s also worth mentioning that even if your company’s products aren’t the kind of thing needed by shelters and food banks, you can still find opportunities to donate them through charitable raffles or fundraising events.

4. Host an In-Person or Virtual Event

Speaking of fundraising events, hosting charitable events can be a great way to use your startup’s influence within the community and organizational capacity as a force for good. These events can be hosted either virtually or in-person and can take a near-limitless number of forms in either case. 

From training events designed to assist budding entrepreneurs to fundraising for charitable causes, there are plenty of options and room for creativity when it comes to hosting events for helping your community.

5. Partner With a Nonprofit

Nonprofit organizations do a lot to help their communities. However, since these organizations don’t always focus on profit, most of them rely on a lot of outside assistance to continue their charitable efforts. This makes partnering with nonprofit organizations in your area a great way to support those within your community. Offering to donate a certain percentage of your company’s profits to a local nonprofit is one straightforward way to support their cause. 

Beyond this, partnering with a nonprofit can also take the form of donating your company’s products and/or resources toward the nonprofit’s efforts within the community or collaborating with a nonprofit to host a charitable event.

6. Offer a Scholarship

Helping students pursue higher education is an excellent way to give back to your community. Working with your company to sponsor a scholarship allows you to support students financially while also providing opportunities for your company to engage with these bright young members of the community.

7. Create a Company Match Program

One great way to donate money to charitable causes within your community while also encouraging your employees to do the same is to create a program where your company offers to match any donation that an employee makes to a chosen charitable cause. In addition to raising money for charity, a company match program also increases awareness about important causes.