Hello again! In December 2020 I posted a blog on “Building Mental & Physical Resilience Within Yourself and Your Team”. I can tell you I had the chance to implement my own advice from that blog recently.

For those of you whom I’ve not had the pleasure of meeting, my name is Mike Deasey. I’m with the Recruiting team at Hollstadt Consulting. I’m also a First Lieutenant in the Army Reserves, currently deployed to Kuwait in support of Operation Inherent Resolve.

I’m very happy to say that our team of six successfully finished the Bataan Death March (an endurance challenge) in 11 hours and 45 minutes. Total distance was 26.2 miles, with a 35lb pack for each of us. It took about a day or two for all of us to be able to move again afterwards! Plenty of blisters and sore muscles to go around, but the team did a great job.

As we are wrapping up the month of April (which is National Volunteerism month) and looking forward to May, I wanted to share another blog post related to service and the impact it has on the world.

Service, as an ideal, is a concept that resonates with many. Individual employees and employers alike can both derive purpose and accomplishment from service to the community, with some organizations having service to the community as the cornerstone of their foundation (Habitat for Humanity as an organization, is one of those example). On an individual level, many people find value and meaning in volunteering with organizations such as Scouting USA, 4-H, or other nationally recognized organizations, as well as smaller, more localized organizations. Military service is another form of service widely recognized.

Employers have opportunities to incorporate an individual employee’s interest in community service to both enrich that employee’s experience with that organization, but also add value back into their own organization. BlackRock Founder and CEO Larry Fink provided his thoughts on the value of providing purpose, often through volunteer or service initiatives. In the article, “In Defense of ‘Social Purpose”, Fink expanded upon his definition of a sense of purpose as “an understanding at every level of the company about its role in the world and in the community.” He continued, “Purpose unifies employees, helps companies see their customers’ needs more clearly, and drives better long-term decision-making.” He added that “This is true whether you’re producing oil, are making movies, or helping people plan for retirement.”

Volunteerism or community service allows a company to promote and express its own values in the community, while also allowing its employees to create a difference in the community. Moreover, it can provide an avenue for individual employees to develop or express attributes or behaviors that are beneficial in the workplace. Teamwork, fairness or equity, respect, being a few examples.   

I’ve found that, in both the military and in the business world, the best leadership happens from the front. Advocating for company values or demonstrating commitment to organizational well-being is best done by the leaders of an organization. Having leaders of an organization participate in service or volunteer initiatives not only demonstrates the importance of those values to the organization, but also allows an opportunity for employees to develop a better relationship with the leaders of their organization.  

I encourage you to reflect and explore where you can make a difference in your part of the world.

I’m counting down the days until I’m back home and back with the Hollstadt team! Sending my best to everyone!