In Work Life

Happy Giving Tuesday!


What is Giving Tuesday?

Giving Tuesday is a global generosity movement unleashing the power of people and organizations to transform their communities and the world.

GivingTuesday was created in 2012 as a simple idea: a day that encourages people to do good. Over the past seven years, it has grown into a global movement that inspires hundreds of millions of people to give, collaborate, and celebrate generosity.

Whether it’s making someone smile, helping a neighbor or stranger out, showing up for an issue or people we care about, or giving some of what we have to those who need our help, every act of generosity counts and everyone has something to give.

You may have noticed that we’re big fans of generosity here at Give and Take. In fact, Adam Grant, one of our cofounders, wrote a whole book about it!

Why Bring Giving Tuesday into the Workplace?

The average American will spend one-third of their lives (over 90,000 hours!) at work. That statistic underscores the central role that work plays in our lives.

However, research shows people who feel more camaraderie with work colleagues have significantly greater health and happiness than their peers. These benefits extend not only to work, but overall in life.

So on this #GivingTuesday, I want to encourage us to think about what we can give at work.

We should think not just in terms of money, but perhaps more importantly in terms of our skill, expertise, advice, connections, mentorship, or even just a listening ear.

The research is abundantly clear:

1. Socially connected adults are healthier and live longer than their more isolated peers.

In the longest study ever conducted on adult development and happiness, 724 adults were tracked for 75+ years, producing tens of thousands pages of information and one resounding takeaway: Good relationships keep us happier and healthier.

2. Giving makes you healthier.

The benefits of social connection include healthier cardiovascular, immune, and neuroendocrine systems and improved physiological responses to stressors.

3. Social connectivity is a greater predictor in longevity of life than quitting smoking, not consuming alcohol, having clean air, and regularly exercising.

As Julianne Holt-Lunstad at Brigham Young University found across 148 studies with 308,849 participants, the number one and two predictors of a longer life are

  1. Being socially integrated (having relationships in your life that span the range from very close to very weak, whether it’s your Uber driver or your significant other)
  2. Having close relationships

Giving Tuesday at Work

So where do work relationships come in? Not everyone at work is going to be your close friend. But every interaction with a co-worker is an opportunity to foster a high-quality connection and improve social connectivity overall.

According to University of Michigan Distinguished University professor Jane Dutton, high quality connections (HQCs) are positive connections between two people that are marked by vitality, mutuality, and positive regard.

Hopefully high-quality connections abound in our personal lives. However, since we spend one-third of our lives at work, we should pursue them at work enthusiastically as well.

One of the most effective ways to form high quality connections is to give and ask for help.

Reciprocity and high-quality connections are mutually reinforcing and perpetually generative. HQCs foster the practice of reciprocity; reciprocity builds new connections and improves the quality of connections between people.

Giving and asking for help increases social connectivity, improving our physical well-being and quality of life at the same time. Reciprocity enriches our workplaces and our lives.  When we build high quality connections, our work becomes life-giving and works for us.

How Givitas Can Help

I’m really excited at the role Givitas is playing in making it easy for people to be generous at work, today and every day.

If you’re interested in joining a Givitas community and seeing what they are all about, we have more than a dozen free communities for you.

Join and pose a question this week, and give someone else the chance to help you (since it’s clear being generous is good for you, when you give someone a chance to be generous, you’re actually helping them out!

Or, if you’re interested in briging Givitas into your orgganization, we’d love to show you how it works. Givitas can connect a group of employees, customers, members, donors, students, alumni, or any other group.

Download the Givitas Solution Sheet
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