This blog post might not seem to have a great deal to do with PR or communication, but the reality is, it is at the foundation of what we do professional and personally. It touches everything.
It was inspired by a post by one of my favourite people in the whole world (even though we have never met in person) – Chris Brogan. His post is short and definitely worth a read. In fact, everything he writes is worth a read. I might not always agree with Chris, but I always respect his opinion and he makes me see the world from a different perspective.
At AHA, we have many clients that are involved in philanthropic and charitable activities. Quite often, we help the organization showcase the good work they are doing as a part of their public relations outreach. People want to do business with an organization that is giving back to the community, whether that’s local or global. The key here is that they are focused on contributing to the world and then we have an opportunity to let their stakeholders and target market know this. They don’t do it because it will make them look good, they do it because they can, because they want to do something good and because – as an organization and as people – it matters to them.
The real world can take it out of you. There is a global economic crisis, we’re all worried about money, people are busier than ever before and more pressure is being put on each of us to deliver results. I don’t know about you, but sometimes even going grocery shopping or finding parking for a meeting can feel like it’s a big battle. Cranky, rude people, no parking spots, or expensive parking fees, and then there’s the winter weather we have to deal with once we get out of the car. It can feel pretty challenging some days. It is easy to become short tempered and irritable. It’s also easy to pull into yourself and forget to be kind or generous. But, like Brogan points out in his post, reaching out and doing some small act of consideration for stranger (or for colleagues, friends and family) doesn’t take a great deal of effort, but it can change the tide of their day – and maybe yours. It doesn’t take a huge gesture, just a little thing. Put money in a meter that you see is about to expire, offer someone a hand across the street if they look like they might need some help, buy the person in line behind you a coffee…Contribute and participate in building a nicer world to live in, one nice thing at a time.
And – to bring it back to a communications focus (which is what this blog is about, after all)…Each time you recognize the opportunities to take the emotional high ground, to reach out and do something nice for someone, to help out when it is needed, you are building your reputation. And we all know that a great reputation is worth its weight in gold. PR can put a spotlight on the good that an organization or person does, but only you can choose to reach out and help someone else. I hope that this post inspires you the way Chris’s post did me. He reminded me to look for those opportunities to do some good through small acts of consideration and kindness.
What good did you do today?