Fill the Net For Hunger

Re-invent Your Strata, Tip #13: A higher purpose.

If you love shoes, you might be familiar with online shoe retailer zappos.com. I’m a Zappos fanboy, but not because of their selection of fancy, must have, running shoes, I’m a fan of their culture. Zappos’ CEO Tony Hsieh (pronounced Shay) believes that people are happiest when they are part of something bigger than themselves – a higher purpose. Tony has made this ideology the cornerstone of Zappos’ culture, and for this reason Zappos is consistently rated one of the best companies in the United States to work for.

From a business point of view, Tony is a visionary, but the idea that people are happier having a higher purpose is not a new one. In fact this same idea can be applied to your condo, apartment or townhouse to create your own amazing culture and help Re-invent Your Strata.

Achieving higher purpose in you strata is easy. Here’s how:

1. Start small, make it easy: Contribute to an existing charity like your local Food Bank or the Salvation Army. Collecting non-perishable foods or donating warm blankets is easy and can be done in-house. Once other residents are on-board you can tackle more ambitious causes as a group (remember, everything’s easier as a group).

2. Keep it manageable by creating a plan: Don’t take on too much too soon, and don’t overwhelm residents. Start by planning a strata charity drive twice per year, Summer/Winter or Fall/Spring often works well.

3. Communicate with residents: Use your strata’s communication tools (website, notice boards, carrier pigeons) to give residents plenty of notice of an upcoming strata charity drive. Once the event is over, keep residents informed by communicating the results, for example:

“Congratulations to the Encore residents who took part in this year’s ‘donate a blanket’ winter charity drive. Together we donated 100 blankets, that’s 20 more blankets than last year. Great job! Keep collecting blankets so we can make next year’s charity drive bigger than ever”.

Once residents are on-board, use your strata’s communication tools to ask them to suggest their own charity ideas. This approach will ensure that residents are contributing to charities that they feel passionate about and reduce donor fatigue.

There’s no doubt that a small group of organized people can achieve some pretty remarkable things. By following these 3 simple tips, your strata will be on its way to achieving a higher purpose. As a result you will supercharge your building’s culture and Re-invent Your Strata.

By-the-way, if you have a moment, check out one of my favorite charities, Charity: Water. Also, if you’re interested in learning more about Tony Hsieh and Zappos, check out Delivering Happiness. Ciao!

Go ahead, have your say:
Does this article get you thinking about your own strata experiences? If so, we’d love to hear from you.

(Five Hole for Food provided the header image. This image was taken during their Fill the net for Hunger charity drive. Thank you so much.)