As a writer for The Motley Fool, it’s easy for me to be critical of companies — that’s my job. But watching million and billion dollar companies look past their bottom-line to help fire victims reaffirmed why there’s more to evaluating a company than just finances. CenturyLink, Inc. (NYSE:CTL) offered free call forwarding to fire victims. Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) provided a $10,000 grant to The American Red Cross, 1-1 matching of employee donations, and set up a system where Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) wireless customers could donate $10 by texting STORM or REDCROSS — Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) waved text-messaging fees for this. And unlike DIRECTV (NASDAQ:DTV)‘s initial response to a fire victim that resulted in widespread social media outrage, DISH Network Corp (NASDAQ:DISH) proactively issued a statement saying all equipment damage fees would be waved, fire victims could pause service, and reinstallation fees would be waved.
Even defense heavyweight, Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC), is helping fire victims. For employees that want to help victims by making donations to 501c3 organizations, Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) will match donations up to $5000 per employee. Additionally, the Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) Foundation provided a $25,000 grant to the Pikes Peak Chapter of the American Red Cross following the Waldo Canyon Fire. That grant was used to buy medical cots, dividers, and a new disaster trailer. Mark Root, Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC)’s Corporate Director of Media Relations, said, “During the Black Forest Fire, that disaster trailer was immediately put into service. The Executive Director of the local Red Cross has repeatedly thanked us and communicated how important the equipment/supplies were in supporting Red Cross operations during this blaze. In one case, enabled them to offer emergent care to a fire evacuee.”
Through their responses to the Black Forest Fire, the above companies demonstrated that there’s more to them than just profits. And when I evaluate a company’s potential long-term stability and growth, the importance a company places on its reputation and how it treats people, plays a large factor.
We will rebuild
Nothing can completely undo the damage from Black Forest Fire, but nothing will destroy our community. As a community, we’ve bonded together to help. More importantly, we will not forget those that stepped up to help us fight this fire and rebuild. Even now, a year after the Waldo Canyon Fire, signs thanking firefighters are proudly displayed in our city. The same will happen to the signs of thanks for the Black Forest Fire firefighters. We, as a community, will never burn.
The article My Property Burned Down Last Wednesday originally appeared on Fool.com is written by Katie Spence.
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