As a non-profit organization, we understand many people desire to work where they can serve, and that's why they apply with us. They want work to be fulfilling and rewarding, not just in their job duties, but by helping others.
In order to develop our team members who typically have a high drive to serve, we do have several of the standard leadership and career development programs in place, but strongly feel we should be doing more than just development for work/career.
We know many companies that give employees opportunity to volunteer and give back to help their communities and thereby increase personal fulfillment, but when jobs within your organization are already about giving back, how do you assist with further personal fulfillment?
Last year, we started sending out information to team members about opportunities about once a quarter on how they can contribute through various methods, including donations of money, time or effort:
· Charity Miles is a phone app where you log any time you walk, run or bike, and you can choose a charity to which the program donates based on the miles you walk/run/bike. A personal fav because it also supports our wellness initiative.
· Giving Tuesday, which follows Black Friday and Cyber Monday during the holiday shopping season, focuses on the importance thinking of those in need during the holidays and donating on that day.
· We also do a toy drive during the holidays, and the toys are collected for the children of our clients who are in treatment, and unable to purchase something themselves. It is amazing to see both the child’s face as well as the parent’s faces light up during the family visits!
· iCitizen is a phone app that was shared with all employees who wanted be more aware of our political system, to know who their representatives are, to understand upcoming legislation, or who has voted on past legislation, and just to get more involved. We had great response to this app.
Also last year, we also adopted a title one elementary school in Houston. Our corporate office organized clothing drives, school supply drives, participated in clean up days and volunteered as “surrogate” moms and dads on the days they have Muffins with Moms and Donuts with Dads, so the kids do not have to sit alone on those days. We also had spouses of team members show up for these events. The gratitude from the kids and the school is so very genuine and rewarding, and we’ve already had more people sign up for next year.
And the efforts don’t stop with our staff, our clients work and donate as well. During the holidays, our clients adopt families who are in need. They will hold car washes and have other fundraising activities to give back to the communities where they are receiving services. All while they are in treatment working on their own personal issues; they are truly an inspiration.
Giving back, no matter how you do it, gives your team members a sense of fulfillment and accomplishment, and they know they have contributed to something greater than themselves.
I’ll close with one of my favorite quotes:
"I slept & dreamt life was joy. I awoke & saw life was service. I acted & behold, service was joy.” Rabindranath Tagore
I hope you can give your team members an opportunity to serve and make a difference today!
Kellee Webb, SPHRPurposefulHR@gmail.com