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    3 Replies Latest reply on Jan 13, 2008 9:00 AM by LUCKIEST

    Do you track the value of your community involvement activities annually (time, product, dollars, etc.)?

    Philanthropy Newbie
      I find a lot of businesses large and small do not track their community involvement very well - what it was and the value of it. Therefore, they have no clue about what percentage of either gross revenue or profit was contributed as a benchmark for internal company purposes or for marketing. What do you do? What issues have you had doing this? Any tips for the rest of us?
        • Re: Do you track the value of your community involvement activities annually (time, product, dollars, etc.)?
          Wingman Adventurer
          Hi Philanthropy,

          You can't deduct the value of your time but I do keep track (and plan to deduct everything else that I can).

          1 - Mileage that I drive for volunteer events
          2 - Cost of materials purchased and donated
          3 - Any other expenses incurred and paid that are related to a involvement

          I'll reduce my gross reciepts for the year by taking these expenses as either marketing or charitable contributions.
          • Re: Do you track the value of your community involvement activities annually (time, product, dollars, etc.)?
            Lighthouse24 Ranger

            My companies track the cost (to us) of donated time, money, products, and services very closely -- we know exactly what we give. (Most other companies do, too, I think.) We don't necessarily track the value of those donations, because we rarely get any feedback to tell us what our contribution was worth to the recipient organizations.

            In that way, my local community is similar to this on-line community. I know how much time I spend providing answers and advice here, but I don't know the value of those responses to the people who asked the questions. Some people are gracious enough to follow up and say, "thank you" -- but only 16 percent of the questions posted in these forums have an indication that a "helpful" or "correct" answer was provided. (Does that mean 84 percent of the time that people spent answering questions was wasted? Are 84 percent of these threads useless? I hope not.) At any rate, almost nobody follows up to say how they applied the answer and what it worth to them.

            So you've asked a very thoughtful question. In my view, the sense of "entitlement" that some charitable organizations and individuals exhibit (suggesting that a successful business somehow "owes" them something) is a very bad approach. After all, who are we more likely to help in the future: someone who accepted our assistance in the past, and then never interacted with us again until they wanted more -- or someone who accepted our assistance in the past, and then told us over and over how beneficial and valuable it was to them? We tend to offer more when we know it had value. We tend to offer less (especially if money is tight) when we only know what it cost us.
            • Re: Do you track the value of your community involvement activities annually (time, product, dollars, etc.)?
              LUCKIEST Guide
              No I do NOT track the value of my community involvement. Now that I have retired from the business world,
              I am spending more time Volunteering. I volunteer at SCORE and also treasurer of two Boards in the County.
              To volunteer in your area just key punch " Volunteermatch " on Google.
              LUCKIEST