Giving in the workplace is not a new concept, but how we give at work is looking very different. In North American countries giving at work revolved around United Way Campaigns where employees found innovative ways to donate funds to this popular charity. Pizza parties, employee monthly pay cheque donations, picnics, bake sales. These were ways employees could raise funds to help their community.
But giving is looking a bit different at the work place in the 21st century. Instead of raising money once a year, companies are looking to support their community through volunteer teams, ongoing donation drives of physical goods rather than one annual funding drive. The benefits of having an ongoing ‘giving culture’ in the workplace is now seen as a benefit for both the company and employees with the greatest benefit for the employees.
Giving to others activates some basic neurological reactions in our brains that increases our happiness. What researchers have been uncovering is that giving is not just a monetary action. It can be simplier, easier and more manageable for all when giving includes actions, gestures, and sharing. Let me give you an example. You can donate money to an organization, or give money directly to someone who needs it. This will make you feel good. But you can also bake someone cookies, share your lunch with another person, volunteer your time, buy someone a coffee, or add flowers to your garden that help our important pollinators. These actions will make you as happy, if not happier, then writing a cheque to your local charity. A small act of giving releases the same happiness response as any donation we might have made. What is also super cool about giving actions is that three people benefit directly from the action; the person giving, the person receiving the give and the observer of the give! Monetary donations are generally not as public as a giving action, so the ripple effect is effectively a bit less. The interaction that takes place when actively giving brings a greater ripple effect within our communities and within our workplaces. Hmm sounds like we are onto something here.
The benefits of giving are numerous but there are specific benefits to employees that just might activate your giving at work. COVID has not helped matters over the last year, with people feeling disconnected, more stressed and isolated due to the restrictions the pandemic has enforced on us. So how would giving change how we work?
The benefits to you as an employee is a long list. Once you start giving during your work day every day, you will feel more productive, increase your creativity, fell less overwhelmed by daily tasks, and find that every day your work culture will be more positive, more encouraging. Benefits for the company will be happier employees, promotes team building and better collaboration while showing others the positive company culture you have created. Giving at work just makes the work day a win win situation for everyone!
So why not take on the giving challenge yourself and see how giving feels at work. Test how it changes your work day, how you interact with customers and how you collaborate with other co workers. If you want to include other employees do so. If you want to just try out giving yourself and see if others catch on, that can be done as well. We experience teams of givers in working environments and sole givers who see the ripple effect after a week. Both are effective, and both produce great results!
So how to start? The 365give Challenge is the best way to begin. We teach you how to plan your gives when you start out, share great giving ideas that work well in any workplace, and share virtual gives for those who are working remotely. We find that giving becomes natural to all of our participants once they see how easy and simple a daily give can be. It really is that simple and you will love how easy it is to give every day.
In Person gives work well for essential workers. Smile at anyone that comes into your workplace. Help someone carry their bags or purchases to the car or a taxi. Ask a customer how their day is, honestly ask them how they are and listen to their answer. Buy a colleague a coffee, just because. Bring in office or workplace treats to share with the staff. Ask ka new employee to join you for lunch. Compliment another employee on the work they did. These simple acts of giving will make a big difference to your day.
If you are working virtually, you can still give to other employees and customers during your work day. Host a virtual coffee break online and talk about how everyone is doing. Compliment the work of another employee. Send a message to a colleague asking them how they are. Send a message of gratitude to a colleague who has helped you out on a project.
Simple acts of giving are just that. Simple. Don’t over think it, just do it! Be kind, plan your gives and watch the magic happen. The ripple will start and your happiness will spread to others you work with and the customers that use your business. It sounds simple and it is that simple.
Sign up for your free 365give membership to get started! Giving is as simple as 1, 2, 3, and the positive effects will keep you going. That shot of happiness will make your work day that much better!