The bottom line (no pun intended) is that being generous is a habit that can be developed – and if entrepreneurs take the time to invest in it, it can radically transform their own lives, and that of the people around them.
Developing a reputation as a generous entrepreneur is a product of purpose, vision, character and conviction. If an entrepreneur is simply after building personal reputation without being truly generous, the chances of failure are numerous.
Put simply, generosity must be based on good intentions aimed at promoting the common good within the community.
An entrepreneur needs to clearly understand why they are being generous otherwise they risk being accused of manipulation. Indeed, many entrepreneurs engage in generous acts so that they can attract media attention in order to increase the market value of their company.
However, an entrepreneur needs to understand generosity alone will not provide enough fuel to make the business, no matter how well intentioned it is.
1. It’s a Habit
Generosity is a habit that needs to be developed. An entrepreneur must have a clear vision about being generous, and they must work hard to achieve it. As part of this vision it must be clear to the entrepreneur that generosity is not some sort of a media stunt aimed at boosting the fortunes of the business. Generosity must be practiced in its own right and not as a hidden agenda.
2. Make Money
Business exists to make money. An entrepreneur’s generosity must be a natural extension of the success of the business. There is no point trying to be generous when the business is going broke. Besides operating a profitable business only allows the entrepreneur to be increase the opportunities to be generous with wealth.
3. It’s Not All About Money
Even though the business needs to be functional, its important for the entrepreneur to recognize that money is not always needed to enagage in generous acts. The entrepreneur can dedicate their time to social causes. They can give of their time and knowledge for free.
Take, for example, a business person can start a mentoring programme program for young high school students to learn more about how to start a business. That, in itself, will increase the reputation of the entrepreneur as someone willing to sacrifice their time to share knowledge and expand the cake of opportunity.
4. Make It a Part of the Business Plan
Being generous must not be left to chance. Rather, it should be incorporated into the business planning processes. An entrepreneur must from the outset know what they are able to be genereous with in the evolution of the business. As entrepreneurs get lost in the money-hunt, it can be easy for the ideal of generosity to get lost. Making generosity a part of the business plan will force the entrepreneur to be obligated to the process of generosity.
5. Have a Cause
Undoubtedly there are loads of humans needs in the world, and no-one entrepreneur can resolve the problems. It is important for an entrepreneur to be passionate about a cause so that they do not appear like a hoax. An entrepreneur must embrace the cause with vision and courage, and be able to contribute time and resources to make sure that it is realised.
Many entrepreneurial endeavours have a latent value, something that they add to society, and when an entrepreneur can identify it, they can use that as a starting point for generous activities.
6. Start Inside
This is perhaps the important tip on developing a reputation as a generous entrepreneur because everything that a business does reflects the character and content of his or her life. When a paradox exists between an entrepreneur’s generosity and their private life, it can spell doom. The entrepreneur must always make a conscious effort to ensure that they are generous with employees and family.
As the old adage goes, if it doesn’t begin in the home, it will not go far. Generosity must begin within the entrepreneur’s own organization.
In essence, generosity can open up new opportunities for the endeavors of the business person.
At the same time, generosity has a boomerang effect which can help to propel the fortunes of a business.