2020 will be remembered, in the years to come, as the year of “Giving” besides all the other widely used definitions such as: the Great Lockdown, the pandemic with more than 80 million people and families infected by covid-19, 1.8 million lives lost and many more “negative” things.
Let me be different and, instead, talk about the positive and good “happenings” of this disgraced year, you wouldn’t imagine how many I’ve seen around.
I’m not talking about the forced smiling that plenty of people have been “putting up” when saying: “Oh yeah 2020 has been pushing me towards a new business model and its working! Or, I’ve been fast adapting and thriving like never before thank you pandemic! Or even, you need disruption to see changes!”
I’m mostly referring to all those giving actions which have never been asked for but naturally happened and, the way they did, have been raising my faith in humankind and the good that we carry within ourselves.
Smile and you will make a difference
Let’s start with the front-liners of the pandemic. Nurses, doctors, healthcare and medical related staff all around the world have been standing still to their posts, didn’t concede anything to the “invisible enemy” and kept on giving to all the ones in need. I’ve seen hundreds of pictures in the media and all social media platforms showing to the world these unsung heroes’ smiles! In reply to their dedication and respect for their work, we all should act wisely and follow the “always-wear-a-mask” and “social distancing” recommendations.
Help your neighbourhood thriving
Another great way of helping / giving back to the society is what plenty of Malaysians have done in the past several months. Buy Malaysian made products and support the neighbourhood where you live by ordering food from the owners of those food stalls which have been mushrooming all around KL and Greater KL. It’s simple, not expensive and, above all, absolutely delicious! Scrolling the newsfeed of most platform will show you what I mean and is there done without anyone asking for it! It’s spontaneous giving!
An “ecofriendly” pandemic
Humankind has been showing in many different ways its willingness to giving and sharing to help others. Our wellness measuring parameters have been changing because of this pandemic and we have seen also a great “ecofriendly” deal that the lockdown has been realizing for us all. Pollution and traffic jam have become memories of the past, hopefully will keep on in this good, revised and more sustainable direction.
Giving to make miracles happening
Then we come to the greatest effect of the pandemic on human behaviors, the willingness to give and the looking at it not as an obligation but a privilege! It is often said that “social changes happen one person at the time”. It may look as an overused quote, but the truth is that we all, humankind, need desperately good examples to follow and learn from, kind of needing to keep on being reminded about the beauty of giving as a positive and good social change.
Another very important learning I’ve personally got is that giving is not about money but smile, care and action! One doesn’t need to wait to become rich to start giving, much better to start now doing good!
Conscious giving to generate a Tsunami of Good
Let’s understand better how to use a multiplier effect of our giving actions as, for sure, if we are able to multiply by 10,000 times the good of our own actions, we will generate a “Tsunami of Good Giving”! It’s all about understanding the magic mechanism of “emulative behaviors”.
I’m sure, by talks, we all agree that a positive and good social change towards a wider “giving” habit is on the top want list of the majority of us. What we all need to do, now, is to become more conscious and plan our “giving” actions in such a way that will push more people to do so!
There are two simple core ideas, that we shall leverage on when “giving”, to make sure our action will be replicated as much as possible. They are:
- The social proofing of giving or, the more people will give the more people will be willing to follow and imitate the good example!
- Taking action and leading by example activates social norms which will shift the balance of what is seen as normal. Giving will become an aspiration and privilege, the New Good Normal!
Knowing more about these two core values will enable all, while giving, to attract even more people to follow.
Social proof is a psychological and social phenomenon related to how people copy the behaviour of others. The public is more likely to act or do things if they see others doing it, above all if these others are just normal people. Social proofing has normally been used in marketing to get people to “emulate” public influencers or key opinion leaders buying habits.
The idea behind social proof is: the more people join in, the less fear others will have to join too. Apply this to “giving” – “Doing-good” and we will see miracles happening!
Social norms help in transforming something unusual into a normal or acceptable behaviour. Applying it to the “giving” subject of this article, it is all about expectations or “what a good individual is expected to do or how is expected to act within a community” (to know more about Social Proof and Social Norms you can read this article)
This can only happen when the “giving” action is highlighted and made public. The more impactful is the action the more followers will generate and again, miracles will happen!
A good example of fantastic emulation happened in 2014, the “Ice Bucket Challenge”. This challenge was launched to help raising awareness and funds for the ALS or motor neuron disease. According to this news website more than 17 million people ended up worldwide pouring an ice bucket on their heads (the author here has been proudly one of them). It is estimate that almost RM500 million have been raised through donations worldwide, here you can read an interesting article from Forbes.
The whole idea is to transform a “giving action” in a good example for other to follow and this has been happening in a widespread way in the past several months all around the world. However, please don’t ever forget that social change is like running a marathon. Something that seems old to you is just reaching the public. It’s the time when endurance is most needed.
Multiply your impact or the “Multi-Level-Marketing” of Giving
Advocacy is a good way to generate multiplier effect. For every person that follows our lead, becomes part of the “givers” network, we are actually multiplying the good impact of our action and making it easier for the next to come. Below is a good example of a simple “giving” action aiming to pull more people in to follow the example!
After seeing the consistent spike of Covid-19 cases related to construction projects, ProSales and ProFix, property integrated tech-solutions providers for property developers and member of Malaysia Proptech Association, right before Christmas, have decided to initiate a subsidy scheme for PCR and Antigen Swab test to help providing a safe and healthful workplace for the construction industry.
This subsidy is made in collaboration with SF Star Enterprise, the tests service provider, where ProSales undertakes to subsidize 1,000 PCR swab test and 1,000 antigen swab tests to be conducted by medical doctors. All test takers will also receive a test reporting. Email to ProSales Health Team to know more about this at: firstname.lastname@example.org
The above is a good example of “giving”. The wish of ProSales and ProFix, of course, besides helping to control the spreading of the pandemic, is to see more players, small and big ones, in the property and construction industry following their idea to spread “good willing” instead of the Covid-19.
It is an example easy to be followed and the old saying “the more the merrier” can be rephrased into “the more the healthier”!
This article was first published on Prosales.