When Benchmark Hospitality executives attend a company outing, they pack jeans and work gloves. That's because they get their hands dirty donating their time to community cleanup projects wherever their meetings are held.
In August, at the annual summer picnic on Sheffield Island in New York's Long Island Sound, 85 attendees followed up a clambake and lobster feast with some manual labor as part of the hotel management company's Hometown Hospitality Initiative of giving back to the community. The volunteers cleaned out a historic lighthouse and shored up a portion of a seawall.
In June, after a management forum at Benchmark's Founders Inn in Virginia Beach, Va., 111 executives volunteered sweat equity to a wetlands restoration project in Norfolk by spending the day cleaning debris that had washed up on the banks of the Lafayette River.
And in May, 32 executives attending a general managers meeting at The Chattanoogan in Chattanooga, Tenn., removed and stacked pieces of scrap metal and other debris at the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum's East Chattanooga rail yard. The executives moved 96 tons of material that day!