While “making money” will likely always be the number one reason that employees show up for work, it’s certainly not the only one. If you want to improve employee morale, you need to understand what makes your team members tick. Often, it’s a desire for purpose and to know that they are making a difference in the world. Especially, if you employ Millennials.

“I have to try and change the landscape, whatever it is.” Robert Plant

Your employees are business rock stars, and in order to reach their full potential, they need to feel like they’re improving their community. Offering your employees paid time off to volunteer may seem like a bizarre way to bring out their best self in the office, but companies around the world are proving how beneficial it can be for the employees and for the business as a whole. In fact, 55 companies on Fortune’s annual list of the 100 Best Companies to Work For offer paid volunteer hours for their employees.

Benefits for the Employees

There are a few ways that volunteering benefits your employees and your company.

Enriched Sense of Purpose

Employees can often get stuck in the daily grind, focused so intently on their day-to-day tasks, that it’s difficult to feel enthused about what they do. Volunteering offers two benefits to the employee when it comes to sense of purpose:

1) They feel good about giving back to the community they live in. They also feel good that the company they work for is supporting their desire to help a population or cause close to their heart.

2) They get a break from their daily grind and have the opportunity to step away from the office and exercise their skills in another environment. Think about a rock star being forced to play the same venue and the same setlist every single day. Their creativity would be stifled.

Increased Skills

Employees are more likely to take risks and step outside of their comfort zones when their job is not on the line. During a volunteer project, employees may discover talents they never knew they had. Talents and skills that they can bring back to their current job role, or use to move up inside your company. Marvelless Mark® reminds his clients that employees who are given the opportunity to experiment and grow, will be more likely to thrive within your company.

Improved Teamwork Among Employees

When you encourage your employees to volunteer together, you give them the opportunity to forge relationships outside of the office. This will lead to improved communication and collaboration inside the office.

Benefits for the Company

Offering paid volunteer time doesn’t just improve employee morale. It also improves the business as a whole.

Improved Visibility within the Community

Doing a group volunteer project? Don’t forget the t-shirts. When you and your team are out and about volunteering, proudly display your logo and show the world that your community matters. People want to do business with companies that care.

Decreased Turnover

When you consider how much it costs to hire and train new employees, and consider how easy it is to offer your employees a few days a year to work on a passion project, volunteering becomes one of the smartest business decisions you will ever make.

Take a cue from companies like Salesforce and Autodesk that have incorporated paid volunteer time (and volunteer grants) into their corporate culture and are reaping the rewards. With happier, more productive employees, your company will inspire rock star results.

Mark Kamp® aka Marvelless Mark® works with organizations who want their teams to achieve immediate rock star results. A Keynote Speaker/Entertainer/Author, Husband, Father, and child of God, his primary message, “Opportunity Rocks®” gives attendees a fresh new perspective on Sales, Marketing, and Employee Performance. Fun and engaging, Mark combines the success secrets of your favorite rock stars with just the right amount of entertainment to transform your employees into business rockstars. Learn more at www.OpportunityRocks.net.