To internally socialize and launch their new post merger brand, commercial landscaping leaders Brickman and ValleyCrest embedded an on-site service event into their 3 day Senior Leadership Conference. Guided by Cause Consulting, the combined company’s top 500 executives built 250 bicycles in the Grand Ballroom of the Hilton Anatole in Dallas, TX. The bikes were given as rewards to a group of less advantaged youth in the local Bonton neighborhood area for their ongoing participation in after-school enrichment programs.
Here are some helpful tips on organizing and executing a Bike Build:
1. Build More Than Bikes: In addition to bikes, create and donate Safety Kitsthat include helmets, locks, reflectors and other items. Use Safety Kit as an opportunity to share educational and safety materials with children and families.
2. Think Beyond the One-Off Event: Work with nonprofit partners and local offices to forge appropriate ongoing relationships. For example, Brickman/ ValleyCrest employees also applied their skills to landscaping an urban garden and removing fallen trees from a wind storm in Bonton.
3. Use Employees as Coaches: Pre-train small groups of employees to be peer-coaches to help guide the Bike Build event.
4. Position the Bikes as a Reward, Not a Gift: Connect bike donation to rewarding and incentivizing young people for their participation in community education and athletic programs.
5. Keep the Inspiration Alive: After the event make sure to capture and share photos and videos of the youth enjoying their bikes with bike build volunteers.