Happy nonprofit, happy donors
Friday, April 21, 2017
Self-care has become a hot topic in recent years and for good reason. Healthy people take less sick days, have higher job performance and are more engaged in their work. Companies that provide options for a healthy work-life balance have higher employee retention. One study found that employees are 14% more engaged when they are given time at work to recharge, 10% more engaged when the office is stocked with healthy food options, 18% more engaged when given time for healthy activities and 18% more engaged when provided a flexible work schedule.
Evaluating your nonprofit’s employee wellness
Though passion-driven, nonprofits are often understaffed, stretched thin on resources and short on funds. High turnover and cases of burnout are common among employees in these types of jobs. Because of the often high-stress environment, it can be easy for employees to get caught up in working for the cause and neglect to take care of themselves.
Unhealthy and unhappy employees tend to be less productive, even if they work long hours. This can easily hurt your nonprofit’s mission by way of fewer donors cultivated. If employees burn out and quit, your fundraising can be hurt even further since other employees now must spend time training a new person rather than focusing on their work. Though people who work at nonprofits tend to be compassionate and self-sacrificing, they shouldn’t be expected to sacrifice their well being for the sake of furthering the organization’s cause.
When a nonprofit creates a great work environment, employees and volunteers alike will be more able and willing to do their jobs well. Research finds that a happier company results in 10% higher customer satisfaction and 54% increase in employee retention. This can translate to donor retention and increased donations overall, which then comes full circle back to the nonprofit. If donors can tell that the employees who contact them about giving are happy in their job and genuinely believe in the cause, they will be more likely to commit their support.
Creating a healthy environment
What is your nonprofit doing to promote self-care and workplace wellness? If you need help in this area, try out a few of the below ways to create a healthier and happier environment for your organization. Your employees will thank you and your donations are likely to increase. Trust us, it’s worth the investment.
1. Provide paid time off, if possible. For some employees, unpaid vacation is something they cannot afford to take. Not only does paid vacation offer much-needed rest and relaxation for your employees, it also keeps you competitive with what other companies may offer.
2. Allow longer lunch breaks to encourage exercise or activities that will relieve stress.
3. Keep the office kitchen stocked with healthy snacks rather than soda and chips. Good snacks provide real energy rather than the temporary boost sugar provides.
4. Provide flexible hours. A later start time could mean more rest for some employees or the time to work out. One work-from-home day each week could allow your employees to save on gas and childcare.
5. Organize staff happy hours, team potlucks or other community-fostering events once a month to encourage friendships among coworkers and to give new employees an easy way to connect.
Engage your nonprofit staff in a conversation about their wellness. If you find an overworked and tired group supporting your cause, try some of these ideas to turn the tide. You’ll get a more productive staff and your donors will be happier too.
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