Change. Transformation. Making a difference. These words evoke feelings of empowerment and optimism. The power to make a difference lies within each of us. And it happens one step at a time. It starts with one person and it spreads to many. I saw it happen one recent Saturday morning, while I was picking up trash along the banks of Four Mile Run River in Arlington, Virginia.
Like hundreds of others who had volunteered for the 26th annual Alice Ferguson Foundation Potomac River Watershed Cleanup across the District of Columbia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia, I wondered how much of an impact I or my team could have on this massive effort to clean up the streams and rivers that feed into the Chesapeake Bay.
As I walked along our designated cleanup site on the morning of the event, I saw an overwhelming amount of trash in the river and along the banks. At first glance, the challenge seemed insurmountable. As the morning wore on, however, a simple truth became obvious – when people come together in support of a cause they believe in, great things can happen. I learned later that 7,791 volunteers across 251 sites had collected 161 tons of trash that morning. Like the other volunteer teams, we had transformed our designated area from a litter-strewn debris field into a trash-free zone. And made a difference...one step at a time.
Think about your own business. What challenges are facing your business? Who is going to take the first step to bring people together in support of a common cause? What difference will you and your co-workers make in the lives of your employees, customers, investors and other stakeholders?