I was talking the other day about what companies can learn from charities, and this generated some interesting discussion. My premise was that people devote significant time and money to charities because they get a sense of deeper purpose. It helps them feel good about their contributions when they know that it’s important.
There’s a range of reasons why your employees should be excited to work for you. Sure, you give them a paycheck. Less than you’d like, perhaps, but enough to help them live their lives. And you’ve tried to create a work environment where everybody is clear on what they’re doing and is guided in the right direction.
But that’s just the price of entry. Without that, you won’t be able to attract or keep employees at all.
You’re looking for more than just the bare-bones contributions, right? What’s going to help people to pull that out of themselves? It’s the sense of deeper purpose, mission, and values. If your employees can see that their contributions make a difference in the world, they’re going to be inspired to do more.
And it’s not like that “difference” needs to be earth-shattering. Sure, some organizations are out to change the world. More power to ‘em. But even having a sense of contribution in the local community can be powerful, because it’s immediate and easier to see.
I was talking with a gentleman recently who is building a company which will give 10% of its proceeds to a particular kind of charity. He’s not even planning to make a big deal out of it in his marketing, it’s just based on the values that he holds dearly. Don’t you think that employees will notice and think more deeply about how their work has more value than just making money? Absolutely.
And I totally endorse the idea of NOT using it as a tool to manipulate customers or workers. That makes it more credible, because there’s a lot of cynical people around these days.
If you want to figure out how to find and articulate your vision and purpose in a way which will build a more powerful company, give your business coach a call!
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Even though Jon’s not really a CEO, only a director and a business coach (because we don’t believe in awarding ourselves fancy titles), he’s doing the CEO Sleepout to support Vinnies. Jon is going to sleep outdoors on the 16th of June without the benefit of warming alcohol (as it's forbidden), to experience what it’s like to be homeless and, of course, to raise money.
Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to donate to Vinnie’s and give Jon a pat on the back for supporting a cause to help homeless people. It seems that being homeless is not much fun rather than the easy life that some of us imagine. When Jon gets back, he’ll let you know how it was.
Click here to donate on Vinnie’s website.
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Tara Winkler is one of those wonderful young Australians of whom we can be rightly proud. You might remember her from the ABC’s TV Australian Story “Children of a lesser god”, if you missed it you can watch it here.
Seamus from Small Fish here.
I am asking you for help.
In introducing her story Jimmy Barnes said:
“What drives a young Sydney woman to drop her glamorous career in the film industry to open an orphanage in Cambodia? Tara Winkler was just twenty-two when she established the Cambodian Children's Trust in Cambodia. She is now 'mother', mentor and older sister to twenty-seven orphans, some as young as two.”
On Australia Day, Tara Winkler was named the 2011 NSW Young Australian of the Year.
I want you to put your hand in your pocket and give her kids a little dosh.
Here is my offer.
If you donate $100.00 to Cambodian CHILDRENS TRUST (click here) and use the following reference number ce92dc0f (but make sure your name is on the donation), I will put you in the hat to win 2 months free Small Fish business coaching valued at ($5,500.00 inc Gst). Just send me a brief email so I can match your donation to a chance to win.
In ten days time (Thursday 3rd February) the president of my BNI will draw out of a hat the lucky winner. You all will be advised who won on that day.
Thanks to Rotary (Rotary Australia World Community Service) your donation is fully tax deductable.
Great young people doing great things, please help.
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