By Jennifer Anderson
Pitney Bowes Mail Services
In 2009, I had the honor of being asked to Chair the Pitney Bowes Employee Giving Campaign, a position that involves leading a diverse group of select employees at all levels, from all divisions.
As Chair, I faced significant challenges posed by the global economic environment. Our goals were to exceed the prior year’s financial giving through employee participation levels, so I had to rely heavily on the planning team’s unique professional experiences and differences for creative solutions.
The Employee Giving Campaign was a global initiative, combining efforts in the U.S., Canada, and the U.K. Because the campaign occurred across and within different cultures, the planning committee understood that a unified global message and theme was imperative for success.
As team members came from different areas of the business and were from different backgrounds, they brought unique perspectives in how to best communicate and engage employees with the campaign. These unique perspectives and differences, along with an inclusive team environment, worked to our advantage by providing different and innovative ideas for a challenging assignment.
For example, we used technology, such as live streaming video during the kick-off events, to create a sense of unity, regardless of where employees were based. In addition, members of the planning team orchestrated in-person rallies, with Pitney Bowes executives and guest speakers from local charities at key locations to keep momentum going and visibility high. We developed rich content for our intranet portal, and pushed regular messages out to all employees at all levels. We also chose a theme that all employees could relate to: the Olympics.
The diversity of thought that came from each individual on the planning committee helped deliver gold-medal results for this year’s employee giving campaign. It was through stellar communication within the team, dedication to an inclusive team environment, and commitment to the cause that helped us succeed. The team increased financial giving by more than 1,200 employees, a 27% overall increase. And, donations increased by over $100,000 from the prior year.
At a time when many are trying to hold onto every penny, Pitney Bowes employees chose to give more than ever before. This is positive proof that diverse and inclusive teams can really go the distance when faced with a challenging project or assignment. It was an honor to lead such an important initiative with a diverse team, at a time when it meant so much to the communities where we live and work.