Finding a way to bring your personal values to work can be challenging. Unless you’re very lucky, chances are that at some point in your career, you’ve had to compromise on what you believe in and de-prioritise things that are important to you.
It may have been saying yes to a deadline you knew was too tight, working with a customer whose values were not aligned to yours, or collaborating with someone who insisted on doing something a certain way even though you knew from experience it wasn’t the best solution.
A lot of organisations have values they happily display on their website or use in their marketing. They sound good to potential employees and customers, but the business’s actions don’t back up their words.
That’s why I feel very lucky to work somewhere with such strong values, and values that I align to. These values bring us together as a team, push us to deliver success for our customers, and are what drive us to implement initiatives like our new Pay It Forward idea.
How did the Pay It Forward initiative come about?
“Supporting the Community” is one of our values and is something we are continuously looking to do, so it wasn’t surprising when one of my colleagues asked “can we have a conversation about Black Lives Matter?” at a recent team meeting. Pushing the usual agenda aside, we talked about what was happening globally, what relevance this had to us here in Australia, and what we could do about it.
Within a few minutes, the idea of a “pay it forward” campaign was floated, and it didn’t take long before that idea became reality.
What is the Pay It Forward initiative?
Dovetailing nicely into our existing Pledge 1% commitment, the Pay It Forward initiative engages with our for-profit customers during the sales cycle to amplify the impact we can have. We ask all our for-profit customers to add 1% to their engagements, which we then match. This is then translated into pro bono hours that our experts can use to assist not-for-profit organisations.
Our focus is to help organisations that work with underrepresented groups. Whether that be First Nations People, members of the LGBTIQ+ community, the elderly, or those with disabilities. These organisations are often small and find it harder to fundraise. By offering skilled volunteering, we know we can amplify the work that they do considerably.
Once the scheme is fully up and running, and assuming lots of our for-profit customers get on board, we estimate that we’ll be able to deliver over 40 days of NFP pro bono support a year. To start with, it’s likely that we’ll be able to deliver small pieces of work: integrating MailChimp or Campaign Monitor to Salesforce; creating some workflows and email templates; delivering some training, but in the longer term, we hope we’ll be able to donate enough time to get organisations established on the platform to enable long-term growth.
As well as living our Supporting the Community value, the process we went through to get this up and running demonstrated our “Being Adventurous and Having Fun” value. Within just three short weeks, we went from idea to fully-fledged initiative! We didn’t worry about getting everything perfect, we simply took a risk and focused on getting something up and running.
A true agile approach to delivering an important initiative. A real reflection of what matters to us as an organisation.
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