Does your organization have an effective way to introduce its disaster and hardship relief fund to new employees? Or are you struggling to get new employees to buy into contributing to your existing employee disaster relief fund? Maybe it is time to change your approach. Young employees may not always see the value in contributing to a fund. This can be especially true if they do not have dependents, are generally in good health, or are not certain if they are planning on staying with a company for the long term.
Selling new and young employees on the theoretical benefits of contributing to a grant when the presentation is made by someone they do not know and trust also can be counterproductive. An impersonal pitch has a small chance of success, but a large chance of being forgotten or worse, ignored. What is the best alternative?
Instead, consider organizing smaller, more meaningful presentations from current employees who contribute, or employees who have benefitted from the grant before, particularly if there has been a large scale natural disaster in the area. These personal stories are always more meaningful than charts full of figures. Furthermore, allowing new employees to hear directly why their colleagues choose to contribute to the fund adds legitimacy to your claims and a human touch.
While not as effective, a short video can create the emotional connection that can convince a new employee to agree to contribute. The core principle here is that the person promoting the fund should be approaching the new employees as peers and colleagues. In many ways, the fund is maintained by the employees, for the employees, so allow them to take ownership for it by taking an active role in presenting to new contributors.
Douglas Stockham EAF President