Last year, more than 600 businesses, 35,000 contributors and 5,000 volunteers gave generously to help lift people out of poverty. When a business chooses to mobilize their employees and partners to be part of this collective effort to ultimately eliminate poverty with a workplace campaign, United Way’s team of campaign managers help to ensure their campaign is a success.
Recently, I was involved in a exceptionally well run workplace campaign. For their first ever campaign, CPI Construction Ltd raised $15,000. CPI chose a week-long campaign, but a campaign doesn’t have to be a week. It can be as short as a day, a single event or a bunch of activities spread throughout the year. However, the success of a campaign depends on the inclusion of a few key elements.
Committee establishment helps with logistics. CPI established a campaign committee led by the office manager. A co-worker and I met with the committee to establish the type of campaign they wanted to run. The choice to have a week-long campaign worked best for them.
Preparation time is also important. It takes time to organize a campaign; plan events, send out invitations and communicate to employees. Since the campaign CPI ran was a week long, they gave themselves two months to plan.
Communicating the campaign to employees in a variety of ways reaches more people. Invitations to events can be emailed, attached to paystubs, via internal communications letters, posters, and verbally.
Organizing an event(s) that works for the company and its employees improves the chances of employee engagement. There are several activities that businesses can do during a campaign. Contact United Way to get a list of ideas.
Here are some examples from the CPI campaign.
- Barbeque and fundraiser at the office for employees, partners, suppliers and sub-trades (Internal and external invites increased donations and created stronger working relationships)
- Whipped-cream soaked sponges were available for purchase by guests to toss at partners willing to be targets
- Curling bonspiel at the Jasper Place Curling Club.
- CPI Construction Ltd partners matched dollars raised
Great campaigns don’t just happen; they require an investment of people, time and resources. The success of the campaign can determine whether or not the company will consider having another one. CPI’s campaign manager said, “The benefits of having a United Way week was that it gave the opportunity for all of our staff, in the office and field to come together under one roof. It is nice to take a break from our regular schedule, have fun and let loose. Our first campaign was a success and we look forward to future campaigns to come”.
I’d like to thank CPI Construction for a amazing first campaign and congratulate them for the enormous effort they put in and the difference it will make in the community.