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Attract New Corporate Clients with Service Trips

by Dec 3, 2019

Employee engagement is more important now than ever before to employees, and is integral to the success of any company. You can capture this in your marketing messaging and start attracting new corporate travel clients!

If you’re looking to provide value to potential corporate travel clients, the following information can help you craft the perfect offer.

In fact, it’s no surprise that 87% of corporate volunteers under the age of 40 say that the service programs they can participate in were a major factor that led them to choose their employer.

Companies of all sizes are jumping on the ‘volunteer vacation’ or ‘service benefit’ bandwagon. Some companies are creating incentive trips where others are implementing a lottery scenario to select employees to go on company-sponsored ‘voluntourism’ trips. There is no right or wrong way to implement volunteer vacations, and companies are largely seeing great benefits from offering these opportunities to their employees.

Read on to discover four reasons that you should consider marketing a corporate service travel program to your network.

1. Your Team Will Be More Engaged

Employee engagement has been on the rise since 2009 in the US and is currently at an all-time high. In fact, 34% of employees report feeling engaged at work. This is great news, because companies are paying more and more attention to the morale and personal values of their employees.

Studies have shown that employees that frequently volunteer with their colleagues are more likely to feel a strong sense of connection and belonging at work. In other words, working together on a volunteer project can help to improve the morale on teams. Corporate volunteer travel is a great way to engage your employees in a unique way.

When employees get to work together on something meaningful outside of the office, there is no corporate hierarchy. This allows for more creativity and creates a space for your employees to bond. This can be especially powerful when bringing people together from different departments or other backgrounds. Collaborating on a volunteer opportunity is a great way to strengthen trust. When a group of employees travel together, you will likely see more tight-knit teams back at the office

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2. Your People Will Be Smarter

Three quarters of managers with employees who participate in a volunteer tourism program report that they notice a significant uptick in their staff’s ability to manage diverse perspectives.

In addition to seeing perspectives other than their own, volunteer travel helps to give employees a better understanding of themselves. Employees report more self-awareness in conversations especially when stressed or sleep-deprived – both common scenarios that can be evoked while volunteering. Self-awareness directly affects decision-making, coordination, and conflict management.

Employees who want to be developed into leadership roles are actively seeking out volunteer opportunities in and outside of work to build their leadership skills. Engaging employees who are seeking personal and professional development often results in increased productivity, more motivated employees, and a greater understanding of the competencies they possess. In other words, volunteerism helps to build a great ‘bench’ for leadership.

3. You Will Amplify Your Company’s Brand

Corporate volunteer travel is an excellent way to engage your employees in the mission of the company. It can also be a great way to enhance company culture by giving your employees a sense of pride and connection with the company, especially when the volunteer project is well aligned with what the company delivers to its customers.

Here’s an example: Let’s say that you represent a large solar energy company and want your employees to feel more engaged to the company’s mission of creating a better-connected world. When selecting a non-profit to volunteer with, you may want to choose one that is focused on bringing renewable energy sources to remote villages. You could further enhance the employee experience by donating company resources other than time to the project. As a result, your employees would have the opportunity to be hands-on with your product while making a difference.

Besides enhancing your brand internally, volunteer tourism also affects how your brand is perceived abroad. When using the same example, this is an opportunity to showcase your product at work as well as to show off your best employees. Corporate volunteerism benefits your company and your employees, as well as the nonprofits and individuals that you get to work with.

4. You Can Save Your Company Money

Corporate volunteer travel programs reach further than leaving your employees feeling good. Because employees return from voluntourism renewed and armed with the skills to work better in teams, they become more engaged with their daily work. This increase in engagement directly impacts the bottom line of a business.

Additionally, engagement is proving to be more important for millennials than a paycheck. In fact, 77% of millennials prefer to donate their skills instead of their money, and millennials are more likely to leave a company after a short amount of time if they do not feel engaged in the workplace. Companies who want to keep and develop their talent must engage their employees. By implementing a program such as a corporate volunteer program, they will reduce attrition, thus impacting the need for additional recruitment, training, and other attrition-related costs.

The Bottom Line

There are many benefits to having a corporate volunteer program. When companies offer volunteer travel opportunities, they are giving their employees opportunities to learn, to work better together, and to create a global impact. Corporate volunteerism also creates positive visibility for both the company and the nonprofits they work with, all while creating happier employees. While corporate volunteerism is not a new concept, millennials are especially engaging with volunteer opportunities, and will likely see it is a vital part of their work-life balance in the future.

Unsure of where to start? Consider partnering with an organization like Padma Organization. Padma selects, oversees, and completes humanitarian and environmental projects throughout south and southeast Asia. Padma works in several countries with a focus on providing cutting edge research-driven solutions that serve under-represented rural communities, and degraded environments both on land and in the oceans. They have been operating in the service trip space for over 20 years and are filling corporate trips for 2021 now.  If you’re interested in learning more about how you can add service trips to your portfolio, you can click here to schedule a consultation.

Are you already marketing a corporate volunteer programs or servicing corporate travel clients in this manner? We want to hear about it. Tell us about your experiences marketing this kind of travel in the comments!

About Samantha Burmeister

TIMA Contributor Samantha Burmeister is the creator of 9to5Nomad, an incredibly insightful travel blog focused on the importance of balance and wellness in corporate travel life. Samantha’s perspectives and thoughts are driven from her deep experience living the 9 to 5 lifestyle and experiencing the highs and lows of corporate life. You can read more about her and experience more of her content here. Want to hire Samantha to contribute her content to your brand? TIMA members can reach her through the TIMA Partner Directory.

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