How Your Small Business Can Help Reduce Global Poverty

World Poverty. It it such a complicated problem and for us in wealthy countries, where I routinely fork out $4 for a flat white, it is hard to get your head around the fact that half of the world's population lives on less than $2.50 per day and nearly half of those survive (or not) on half of that!

We're talking billions of people here.

It is such an overwhelming and complicated issue, those of us lucky enough to live in comparative wealth, can feel powerless to do anything about it.

Because it is a BIG problem, we can assume that only BIG actions and BIG financial contributions can have an impact.

Well, it turns out this is far from the truth.

In fact, as entrepreneurs, we have the potential to make a huge difference throughout the world and you don't have to wait until your business has made millions to create an impact.

In this interview, Paul and I cover:
That's the topic of today's podcast as I introduce you to one of the co-founders of the company I have partnered with to make a very real impact on the lives of people less fortunate, through the power of small.

You're going to love my interview with Paul Dunn, the chairman of of B1G1. Such an incredibly inspiring and genuinely adorable person.

  • How a business idea that has impacted millions of people, started from an off-hand comment that Paul couldn't even remember making.... And caused his soon-to-be co-founder Masami Soto a week of sleepless nights as her mind buzzed with ideas and possibilities.

  • How 162 MILLION impacts started with the thought " Imagine a world where every time a business transaction is done something great happens as a result of that transaction."

  • How B1G1 is different to normal charities and is designed to work specifically with small and medium sized businesses.

  • The system I was looking for that would make it easy for me to make a difference NOW.

  • How creating my list of "15 Things We Believe" showed me I wasn't walking my talk consistently and what I did about #13 on that list.

  • The weird obsession accountants have with goats

  • How we have involved our clients with our culture of giving and using this as another inspiration to create success in my own business.

I also share below a "cheat sheet" action plan for you, so you can assess your own approach to philanthropy and start to make a difference in the world through your own business NOW.

The 5 Steps: How Your Small Business Can Impact World Poverty Now
1. Get Clear on What You Believe
When I went through the process of consolidating my business under our brand Romance Your Tribe, I led myself through a process I now guide my Attract Your Tribe clients through.

I know that a tribe will only form around a brand if the leader can say "this is what we believe around here". So I took the time to get clear on this and the result can be found here on this page "The 15 Things We Believe".

This acts as my "guiding star" and I refer back to it constantly to make sure my business is growing and operating according to what I believe.

Doing this made me realise I was not walking my talk. I did everything on the list but #13 I only did adhoc. I did not have a system in my business to ensure I constantly walked my talk.

Here is #13 and this lead me to seek a charity partner who would help me create a system around giving.

2. Get Clear on What Projects Align With Your Business
When you partner your business with a charity, you are doing more than simply giving to a charity. You are aligning your brand with the charity and with the project you are giving to.
It is more than simply giving based on your personal priorities and passions.
Personal
For example, what you may not know about me, is I am a passionate greenie. Proudly so. I care about the environment and the legacy we leave our children. So on a personal level I give to environmental charities.

I am also passionate about my local community so I volunteer as an active surf lifesaver and give financially to my local surf club.

I am also passionate about supporting our youth to give them confidence and opportunities so I have secretly supported, both financially and emotionally, a few teenagers in my children's social circle, who were disadvantaged. I cry with pride when I see what wonderful things they have gone on to achieve, knowing I had a small part to play in their confidence.

For example, every time a new member joined my Attract Your Tribe program, to celebrate, on their behalf we sponsor a woman in Malawai, Africa for 12 months of business mentoring run by local people.

Our business is all about mentoring and entrepreneurship, so we chose to support a project that does the same for other women.

So choose a project that aligns closely with what your company does and what you believe.

I still don't get the fascination accountants have with goats though 🙂

3. Find a Charity Partner You Believe In
There are so many charities in the world. It's quite overwhelming actually!

You may already have a charity you love in which case, approach them and ask how you can work together to achieve your goals together.

You may also have a local charity you want to support.

Just be clear on what you look for in a charity partner.

My Criteria For Choosing a Charity Partner
There are so many charities in the world. It's quite overwhelming actually!

You may already have a charity you love in which case, approach them and ask how you can work together to achieve your goals together.

You may also have a local charity you want to support.

Just be clear on what you look for in a charity partner.

  • The money must actually make it to the people in need, not be consumed in administration (b1G1 charge an annual membership fee which covers all administration and even bank fees. So everything I raise after that goes 100% to the people I want to help).

  • The projects are all vetted on the ground to ensure they are run well

  • The projects create leverage so helping one person has a ripple effect so they can ultimately become self-sustaining.

  • I want to be part of a tribe myself. I want to find a charity partner who will enable me to connect with like-minded businesses so I can learn from their ideas and be part of something even bigger (B1G1 facilitate this through video conferencing and an annual conference)

For me B1 G1 filled each criteria. They actually work WITH multiple charities, rather than run the projects themselves. I like that. They do what they do well, and let the charities they vett to do what they do well.
Create your own set of criteria for how you will choose your charity partner.
4. Involve Your Clients
If all of humanity does this, then the spirit of humanity can shift and amazing things can happen.
The people who I work with, the people who are drawn to me and that I've designed my business to attract, are people who want to make a difference. They genuinely care about the people who they help as their customers. I found that it can be really frustrating when you have that vision, but you don't necessarily have the tools to be able to do it.
So I give them the tools through the action we take on their behalf.
I involve my clients as part of the giving by linking transactions, or milestones in our business, with giving. So when members join our Attract Your Tribe Program, our VIP mentoring programs, and in fact any program we create and sell, we send a message of gratitude and celebration, sharing exactly what impact they have made in the world, by trusting us to do business with.

You can see our commitments and projects over here on our World Tribe page.

The B1 G1 website has some great stories of how different businesses involve their clients in the process of giving.

5. Link Your Success With Your Impact
This is where you are creating a system around your culture of giving, rather than giving ad hoc when you think you have spare funds (what I was doing before). And in business, it is systems and sustainability that create success, in everything you do.
Here are 2 ways to do this...
1. Links Sales With a Commitment To Give... and be transparent
Ooh now this is a big one and one that made me nervous.

It's easy to say publicly "this is what we will do".

It's another to actually do it!

So force yourself to be accountable by sharing your results!

That's what I've done here over on our World Tribe Page.

I can tell you now it makes me nervous. As soon as I did that I had immediate feelings of inadequacy!

And that's a good thing. Because I am super motivate now to sell more, so I can hold my head up with pride as our givings increase.

Go on... I double dare you!

2. Link Giving With KPI's You Want To Improve
One of my KPI's in my business is how many people actually finish the training programs we deliver and how many get results. So I challenged myself to think of a way to meet my KPI and linking it with giving.

So this is what we did:

Measure Success

To measure success, I added a survey members can complete only when they complete a program.

This measures their results and before and after measures of success.

Link KPI Improvement With Giving

My challenge now is to keep on tweaking the way I help people to get more and more people to succeed and complete our programs.

We involve them in the process by tying another gift of business mentoring to a disadvantaged woman, every time they complete a program.

For me, this inspires me even further to make my programs awesome and has a very tangible measure that makes both me and my client get a dose of feel-good fuzzies when we have both reached the finish line of a program.

What can you do to tie giving with KPI's you identify you want to improve?

A Simple Action Step
If you want to get started with B1G1, just go to B1G1.com and look at the site. You can go ahead and click on "Join Us". Or, you can find something that offers you a free Giving Plan that's simply magical
In just six minutes, you can go ahead and describe yourself. Talk about what you do, what you want to do, and what's stopping you from doing that. The big difference is that it's not an AI. You're actually talking to a human person. You can also opt to arrange a dialogue at a later time. Then you can really make amazing change.
What do you think about today's podcast? I'd love to hear your thoughts about B1G1 and how you think you can apply this system to your own business. What's something you care about? What connections would you love to make?
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