What could you do with $100? Could you make a difference? This is the question Ryan Kononoff, Clearbridge Business Solutions founder and CEO asked himself as he looked for ways to encourage generosity and empower his staff to focus on bringing hope and goodness into the world.
“Four years ago I decided to give every employee at Clearbridge $100 with the challenge to use it to help someone else. I wanted them to choose a person or project they were passionate about and then report back with the difference they were able to make as a result,” Kononoff said.
While he could have taken the traditional route and given his staff a regular holiday party and corporate gifts, he wanted to find a way to do something more meaningful.
From this seed of an idea, the Christmas Mission was born. At Christmastime for the past three years, Kononoff has given each of his employees $100 with the only rule being they have to use it to positively impact another person.
Some staff members reported donating their funds to charities that have helped them personally, such as Children’s Hospital and Anxiety BC. Others used their $100 to invest in microfinancing organizations and even a school robotics club.
“By participating in the Christmas Mission, you have the opportunity to make a difference in someone else’s life. Sure, $100 may not seem like a lot if you have your basic needs covered, but for someone who is in a tight spot, $100 could mean everything,” he said.
Throughout 2020, Clearbridge employees shared about their Christmas Mission with others. Their stories inspired another business owner to run his own Christmas Mission at his company with over 70 employees!
In this giving season, Clearbridge Business Solutions challenges other business owners, employees, students, families and individuals to consider participating in the Christmas Mission.
“Finding ways to help others is such an amazing gift, and these Christmas Mission stories will make a lasting impression on everyone who hears them,” Kononoff said.