Time is money for meeting and event planners, with a super-human level of organizational skills required to maximize both.
For Allison Beers, owner of Traverse, City, Mich.’s Events North, the dedication of her and her company’s time to help local nonprofits and other charitable organizations pays off in a variety of ways.
“In our industry we find that nonprofits need the support of what we do, but a lot of them can’t afford us,” Beers said. “What we typically do is offer a nonprofit rate, and then take a chunk and offer an in-kind donation.
“Since the inception of our business I’ve grown our business to have us contributing our time, and that’s part of what I do,” she continued.
There is a long list of beneficiaries, including Habitat for Humanity, Women’s Resource Center, Traverse City’s Old Town Playhouse, Freedom Builders (home ownership aid), Michigan Blood, Carter’s Kids (which builds playgrounds), Goodwill and TART Trails (Traverse Area Recreation and Transportation Trails).
Beers, who is co-president and founder of Impact 100 TC, a group of Northern Michigan women who each donate $1,000 to collectively give to a single Northern Michigan nonprofit, also finds that her involvement in Rotary International serves as a guiding principle, and results in her participation in a number of Rotary charities.
“Volunteering is what I was raised doing,” she said, “and ‘Service Above Self,’ the Rotarians’ motto, is a way of life.”
This selfless philanthropic philosophy is also ingrained in the fabric of Events North, with Beers’ employees joining in to give back, whether it be to traditional charitable efforts or by participation in civic business organizations.
“It’s part of our office culture,” she said. “We volunteer as much as we can. And I also serve time on many boards in town, such as the Downtown Development Authority, Traverse City Chamber of Commerce and the Boom Boom Club, which fundraises for fireworks for our Fourth of July celebration.”
Beers believes that donating her time to civic and charitable organizations is also good in a business sense, in that it helps form lasting bonds.
“It’s another way to make friends in an authentic nature, and let them get to know us,” she said. “I just love contributing to this community. It’s an amazing place to live, and to get to take part and support our community through my organizational skill set is the best way to give back—to keep things in line and lend service to the community.”