They say it takes a village to raise a child, and the same can be said about businesses. No business owner becomes successful entirely on his or her own. Your village includes employees who want to help your organization succeed, mentors who share their advice, and customers who choose to do their shopping at your business. Each plays an important role in the growth and success of your company.

Here are five great reasons to get involved in your community during the holiday season (bonus points if you have a corporate social responsibility plan to continue giving year round):

Strong Business Relationships

There are many brilliant people out there in your community, sharing their time and expertise with local charities. By getting involved, you get to know them and share ideas together. The other person may share useful advice, collaborate with you on a new project, or introduce you to other people who can help your company. Business is about building relationships—with customers, with staff, and with potential partners.

Improved Employee Morale

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Sure, employees go to work to get paid, but encouraging them to volunteer during work hours or get involved in charitable organizations can improve morale and boost productivity. Local charities benefit by getting more volunteers, and your business benefits by having more engaged, inspired employees. Offering paid time off for staff to volunteer has proven to be effective in boosting employee morale.

Credibility With Customers

Increasing profits isn’t the only reason to give back, but it can be a powerful one. After all, you’re a businessperson and you need your business to succeed. According to a May 2013 study conducted by Cone Communications and Echo Research, 82% of American consumers consider corporate social responsibility when they decide where to shop. If they know you’re involved in local organizations, they’re more likely to come to your store.

Unexpected Publicity

Okay, we know this is a long shot, but thought we’d throw it in here anyway. Consider this financial firm in London whose traders gave up a full day to raise money for charity, donating their day’s revenue and commissions to good causes. They were thanked by a visit from Prince William and Princess Kate! While your efforts may not draw royal attention, you might earn free advertising if the local media takes notice.

Public Spirit

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Volunteer your time, collect donations, or offer your business space to host an event. Your local charitable organizations will appreciate it, and you’ll feel good about having done so, especially at this time of year.

Getting involved in charities this holiday season is a great way to give back to your community. It doesn’t hurt that your business could benefit, too. If you’re ready to do your part, check out these ways to get involved in your community beyond the holiday season.

Top image credit: Jacob Lund / Shutterstock