Select a cause that you truly believe in. Resist the temptation of selecting the popular option as it offers lower risk. These are often much easier to implement as much more infrastructure is available upfront. The problem is that you will lack the passion and conviction necessary to drive the program and this will show in the results.
Clearly understand why most organizations don’t pursue such endeavors. It is very simple as to why they don’t as they are very challenging and remember that they will be challenging for you as well. Expect this hard work from the get go but the reward is worth the effort.
Get feedback from your target audience early in the process. It is important that you learn what the critical elements to a program are and by sharing your thoughts you can garner instant feedback. We often are afraid to ask for feedback for work in progress but the end result will be much better if you do.
Enlist the input of ideas in the decision making process in the early stages. It is much easier to garner the support necessary for the rollout in the early stages of the process. People will feel part of the program and more likely to support the effort when needed.
Take some risks. Don’t be afraid of some hiccups along the way, as nothing is perfect and there surely will be some issues crop up. These programs thrive on novel, innovative ideas and your program will likely lack the required buzz if don’t stretch the limits of what is common within your organization.
Minimize the effort that is required by the customer. By you providing the sweat equity that is required to make the process smooth and turnkey, participation will increase due to the increased ease of use.
Use the cause for inspiration to achieve excellence in the process. Always remember and remind people that the reward is much bigger than you are. It is easy to get bogged down in the process but the light at the end of the tunnel is helping people…and that is a good thing.
Share the success of helping people with everyone in the organization. Make sure everyone in the organization basks in the humanitarian effort of helping people and works toward spreading that gift of caring to everyone they come in contact with.
Keep the program simple. Simple to understand, simple to communicate, simple to execute, simple to enroll, simple to reward, turnkey simple, and simple to enjoy.
Have fun. In the words of the immortal basketball coach John Wooden, “You can’t live a perfect day without doing something for someone who will never be able to repay you.” Make a difference. Start today.