Walking in on day one with Davidson & Associates Insurance in 2012, I was prepared for claims and cold calls. What I found, however, was a unique culture focused on community.
I kind of stepped in it actually. I learned about a grant program offered through one of our insurance company partners. The program allowed us to nominate a local nonprofit to receive up to $5,000. Being new, I asked the whole team who we should nominate, and I received more than eight nonprofits that team members were involved in serving or supporting. I was amazed that our staff was so involved, and also ended up having to organize an all-staff vote.
What I learned is that putting community first is part of our DNA, and it all stems from our founder Bruce Davidson. He made people his mission, and that core value still stands strong. Whether it’s our team, clients or community, we realize that personal connections are much more valuable than any policy or rate we can offer.
Our agency has grown here in Vancouver because of the support of our community, and we feel it is our duty to help support the community that has supported us in and out of the office. Getting involved and giving back helps uphold our reputation as a service-oriented agency. It also makes us feel good at the end of the workday.
Community involvement and team engagement also supports our strategic business goals, because these activities foster leads. And as our prospective clients compare their options, we find that our focus on making a difference in the community sets us apart from competitors.
Making sure good deeds go noticed
Like many other local businesses, we lead with service in our operations and messaging. By hiring a full-time marketing and community relations coordinator, we took a pivotal step in our commitment to supporting local causes by growing our community involvement, events and sponsorships.
Not only do these activities support our goals, but they allow us to share our vision of what local businesses can accomplish if they work together to support our community. Giving back is not only possible, it can be simple.
In fact, this month brings one of the easier ways for people, and businesses, to give – Give More 24! Our agency has had the pleasure of being the presenting sponsor of our region’s very own giving day for four years, and it has become one of our most successful endeavors.
This 24-hour online giving marathon on Sept. 19 is a perfect fit for community-minded businesses, and here are a few of the features that I feel set it apart:
It lifts all boats: Our team doesn’t have to choose just one nonprofit, because the event supports 170 organizations at once. It also means our team is able to find and donate to causes that speak to them personally. Nobody has to feel left out, because everyone wins at the end of the day. It’s a collective effort that invests in the nonprofit sector as a whole, both in terms of awareness and fundraising.
It offers flexibility: There are many ways to get involved in this event. Businesses can offer matching funds to support a specific nonprofit, start a business fundraiser to highlight and track employee giving, provide general sponsorship or volunteer to support a nonprofit and see its impact in action.
It inspires community: Give More 24! builds a sense of cooperation and community. Online, you can see how many people are contributing. Out in the community, you get a sense for the collaboration and camaraderie the day builds. Everyone is having fun and connecting for a good cause, which inspires optimism and hope for what we can accomplish together.
Whatever your company’s charitable goals, they can likely be accomplished or supported during Give More 24! This year we’re taking advantage of the business fundraiser feature to create competition and excitement around charitable giving within our office. Our goal: 100% involvement within the agency.
Additionally, we encourage our entire team to get involved on Sept. 19. We provide on-the-clock time for them to volunteer or celebrate with the causes and organizations they are passionate about.
We pride ourselves on exceeding our customers’ expectations. This extends to our place in the broader community as well. We don’t want to be just another insurance company. We want to contribute and leave southwest Washington better than we found it.
As a family business that has grown up here, our kids go to school here, we shop at the same grocery stores our clients do, play at the same local parks and support the same organizations. This is our home and focusing on what connects us is how we can set ourselves apart as businesses.
Bryce Davidson is a shareholder and principal with Davidson & Associates Insurance. He currently leads the personal insurance team. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.