Why many leaders are working to give.
I was looking for a good book on corporate ethics and landed on The Most Good You Can Do by Peter Singer. He is a moral philosopher and Professor of Bioethics at Princeton.
The book is primarily about altruism and stories of how altruistic leaders think about their wealth, how they live and how they give their money.
It’s a thought provoking and inspiring read but it took some time to really sit with the idea of “Work to Give”. Some of the dots have connected for me and this post might help them connect for you too.
The Startup Community Way
One of my new roles is as a Moderator in the global Startup Community created by Brad Feld. The opportunity to join the community came about because I took his course offered through Tech Stars/Kauffman on raising Venture Capital earlier this year.
I got a note from Brad welcoming me to the community. It felt personal so I responded with a very brief thank you, intro and offer to help. He responded asking if I’d like to be a Moderator.
What I didn’t realize then is that I had honored his principle for the community of “Give First”. Give First is about offering people help without expecting anything in return. At some point in the future, that same generosity gets extended to you too.
I don’t know Brad well but my guess is that the Give First principle extends beyond the Startup Community to how he lives his life.
I started a discussion within the startup community to brainstorm with others about the homeless issue. Homelessness is a growing problem in every major city in North America and around the world.
Coronavirus has made the problem more visible in North America because there are more people in need and fewer resources for them. It seems to be affecting women on both sides of the issue more acutely than men.
My goal in initiating the discussion was to share what I know and engage other innovative minds to help think through the problems and possible solutions.
We need some more input from government leaders, others familiar with the issue and others interested in helping. Specifically:
1/ We know IBM is providing some software in some parts of the world to track refugees. Are government agencies working with IBM or someone else to track the homeless population? Does the technology meet the need or could it be better?
2/ How many more homes do they need to house the homeless? What type of housing is most needed?
3/ Are people able to transition from temporary housing to a home on time or is there a bottle neck?
4/ If there is a bottle neck, is the primary issue housing or another issue? [ie. lack of job, medical needs, lack of affordable housing etc.]
5/ Is there an unmet need within the current ecosystem of non-profits? Or what do you think would help them the most?
I have no professional interest in this matter other than I would like to help the homeless move forward in life. They deserve more and they deserve our help.
If you’d like to join our discussion or share some insights about your city with me, it would be greatly appreciated.
Happy Thanksgiving to those celebrating the Canadian holiday this weekend.