philanthropy

Giving is a Team Sport – Every Player Matters

I’m a firm believer in teamwork. As a matter of fact, I like to think that I live by John C. Maxwell’s quote: “Teamwork makes the dream work.” This fall, my ten-year-old son, Myles, rejuvenated the way that I view collaborative efforts. Myles played football on a team for the first time. I was convinced that his moxie and his heart had earned him the quarterback spot. I was wrong. He actually ended up spending a lot of the season on the sidelines.

One day I asked him how he was feeling about not getting to play as much as some of his teammates. I mean, after all – he was at every practice. He was working just as hard as everyone else. His response really resonated with me. He said: “Mom, every position is important. Everybody plays a part on the team. I’m just as important as the quarterback, even if I’m not on the field as much as everybody else.”

He was right. Win or lose, his team was great because of their collective strength, not because of any one individual. They were all valuable – from the tiny water boy to the fastest maverick out there.

The same can be said for great giving. It is teams, not individuals, that make real progress in the world of organized giving. Every participant in the workplace is valuable, from the CEO who donates the most money, to the lower level staffers. I actually believe that it is the organizers who build a positive company culture, as they unite people around a worthy cause. The CEO might get the glory, but it’s the staff that gets the job done. Similar to Myles and his team quarterback this year. He might not have been the one that ran the ball into the end zone, but that doesn’t mean that he didn’t take part in the play that got his teammate there.

Ultimately, passion pushes people – just as it pushed Myles this season. Inspired givers share a passion for their cause. They also share a higher level of persistence, an optimistic attitude and hope for the future. When people who are supposed to be working together see their team getting excited about something the momentum always changes. More people will be willing to devote energy, time and money to the cause. This is where you will see collaboration become a breeding ground for a company culture that is optimistic, excited, and equal in the midst of their strengths, weaknesses, and varying roles within the workplace.

We are all born with different abilities, and everyone brings a different bucket of resources to the table. From the quarterback to the little boy on the sidelines who dreams of playing in the NFL –  from the face of your campaign to the intern who makes your copies…Let’s remember that every player matters in giving.

 

Tiffany Eckert is a mother of three children, Gold Star Wife, passionate supporter of the military community and a strong advocate of paying it forward. She has locked arms with the Medix team as a blog contributor, sharing her insights into military issues and social responsibility.

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