Although we joke around a lot here at goodr, we do know that life cannot ONLY be irreverent humor and slamming margaritas all day (we actually don’t slam margaritas all day either, contrary to popular belief…) We understand that for the fun to be fun, we must also take moments to pause, be serious, and be vulnerable. In fact, our two values as a company are: have fun and be authentic. We believe that when you allow people to experience and express their true selves, you invite the fun.
Allow me to introduce myself – I am Alli, World Dominator (which is International Sales, but goodrified…). I’d like to tell you about a volunteer day that I set up at goodr, which requires a bit of background about why…
Every quarter we are tasked with identifying three elements of our job: Autonomy, Mastery, and Purpose. These categories (from Daniel Pink’s book, Drive, which we read as a company) are the basis for which we are evaluated as they speak to how we perform in our roll (autonomy), execute on something beyond our current skill set (mastery), and focus on something greater than ourselves (purpose). In other words, we are not just sales reps (in goodr: Account Pandas), customer service people (in goodr: CS Parrots), or any other job description, we are individuals that live in a company where our focus is just as much on slinging sunnies as it is at finding the heart of everyone that works here.
As a way to fulfill my purpose project for last quarter, I set up two volunteer days. The first day was with a nonprofit called Food Forward, which uses volunteers to go around farmers markets and collect any food that people are willing to donate. They then give this food to homeless shelters throughout the community. Our task was simple, go around and get as many vendors as possible to donate food. It was a rare rainy day as we walked around 1st street in Santa Monica. We all walked around asking for donations, doing the practice of asking for a product straight up, or in my world also known as cold calling. It was amazing to see a Dollar Bill Guru, Production Mad Hatter, Master of Collaboration, Customer Service Parrot and Account Unicorn all come together to attempt the task of gathering donations.
A thing that is familiar in my world but so outside of what most of them do. It brought the most outgoing qualities of an introvert and forced the extrovert to take a step back. Our team dynamics got flipped in the best way and resulting in us collecting 1,486 pounds of fresh produce.
The second day was spent at the Midnight Mission in downtown LA. Again, we were met with rainy weather which meant that the shelter was more lively than usual. The crew this time around was a little more robust (I think that Carl the Flamingo told people that there would be free shrimp at the end of the day), so with 15 of us sitting on a spectrum of experiences and personalities we suited up in our aprons, plastic gloves, and hair nets to get ready for the day. We each took our stations with my vegan, bubbly co-worker Rhea naturally getting the position of handing out salad and our outgoing, welcoming CEO (Chief Executive Octopus) Stephen in the back collecting trays alongside a member of the shelter community. With the sound of the bell, lunch service had begun. Hundreds of community members lined up, grabbing trays and stopping briefly at Rhea’s station as she attempted to give person after person her “leafy greens” but all to be avoided as the guests eagerly walked passed her to ensure they received dessert being served up by our cheery Parrot Jacob. The lunch hour quickly came to a close and as we all came back together, a group that is usually very chatty, had stopped to take it all in.
Both of these days were humbling, heartwarming, heart-wrenching, and joyful all at the same time.
This experience brought us all a little closer to our community, showed us different sides of each other and taught us that to truly give back simply means showing up. It is a value that we live by internally, mostly because every time you say you are going to show up and do not an octopus loses a tentacle. So make sure you show up, if for no other reason than Octopi are amazing wonderful creatures who count on you to remember that this practice can be a powerful tool for change.
About the Author
As a proud Gryffindor, Alli Watt, has the spirit of an eagle with the heart of a lion. As such, it takes all of these qualities to be our World Dominator (also known as International Sales Manager for all you muggles out there).