BUILDING ENGAGEMENT THROUGH GIVING
Blog Post, Posted on November 20, 2014
Fast Company recently published a story about finding your mission to create a competitive edge.
On the surface that sounds ridiculously basic. But what the article goes on to explain in greater detail is how employees who are engaged with their company and have a joint sense of mission are more productive.
As business people, we have all bought into the idea of establishing a mission, vision and values for our organizations. But how do you make that actionable? How do you mesh an individual’s sense of purpose with that of the company?
During this season of giving thanks and giving back we thought it would be helpful to share some examples of how we practice this ourselves. Part of what makes working at Phinney Bischoff special is that we truly believe in doing meaningful work with clients who make the world a better place. We, too, want to make the world a better place and provide our employees the opportunity to connect with that sense of purpose.
Over the years, we’ve developed a few principles about building stronger teams.
You don’t need consultants or a budget to do this kind of work. Here are three examples of how your organization can build engagement and teamwork while supporting some great causes:
1. Work together…on something else
Food Lifeline is the organization that helps get food to food banks throughout the state of Washington. Much of what they do is “food rescue”…taking otherwise perfectly good food that might be in damaged packaging, or store overstock, and repackaging it for distribution to food bank locations.
Every quarter, we at PB step away from our desks, roll up our sleeves and don sensible shoes (and sometimes hairnets) to pack boxes full of food for those in need. It’s a complete turn-around from branding work but for whatever reason, it leaves us feeling inspired and bonded. It reminds us how well we work together as a team no matter what the assignment. It only takes a couple hours after work and all the coordinating is handled by Food Lifeline.
2. Serve others (and break bread together)
FareStart is an amazing non-profit organization that runs a restaurant to help homeless men, women and families achieve self-sufficiency through life skills, job training and employment in the food service industry. PB likes to support them by volunteering as servers for a night. All the proceeds of the night, including gratuities, go back to fund student services and training. And volunteers are rewarded with a wonderful meal. The experience not only renews your appreciation for the service industry (and how hard they really do work for those tips!), but provides a tangible outcome from the sweat equity invested. Again, the commitment is just a few hours after work and the coordination is handled by FareStart.
We especially love this aspect of FareStart's vision: We nourish our community by collaborating with our partners to put an end to homelessness, one human being at a time.
3: Celebrate givingFor over 15 years, Phinney Bischoff has supported Childhaven, a national leader in caring for abused and neglected children. Every year we participate in the Giving Tree Program where we host a tree filled with wishes we can fulfill for a family in need. Employees donate money for holiday gifts, which the company matches. Then we go out shopping together for those gifts and hilarity ensues. Doing this as a group makes us feel bound together for a common cause. And plus, shopping the toy aisle with coworkers is a blast! Once again, the time investment is minimal, all you do is shop and drop the presents off at Childhaven… no wrapping involved.
If you would like to support any of these causes, we encourage you to do so!
And, if you have any questions, please give us a call.
We hope this provides you with some ideas and inspiration for ways your organization can embrace your mission and translate it into actionable activities that build camaraderie and loyalty. What ways have you provided opportunities for employee engagement with your mission? Please share in the comments!