Ever been the recipient of a “pay it forward” act of kindness, where someone does something nice for you with the simple expectation you will return the generosity, not to them, but to someone else at another moment in time?
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It’s an “ah ha” “penny drop” kind of experience – the type that gives a warm and fuzzy feel in that moment but also builds communities and a sense of overall wellbeing.
It creates that feeling there are others out there, whom you may not know, who are willing to have your back.
My wife Maria and I recently had one of those moments – just a small act of kindness in a mundane setting – that not only made our day but also highlighted a potentially positive approach to business.
Not just a trolley coin
There we were standing at a Sunshine Coast supermarket, armed with our wallets, recyclable shopping bags and a list of items that needed to be acquired.
What we didn’t have with us was a trolley token or $2 coin, meaning all that was standing between us and a simple grocery shop was the token that would release the trolley we required.
That’s when a small but greatly appreciated act of kindness occurred, with the man behind us proffering a small gold coin.
Should we accept it, could we accept it? “Just pay it forward” was his response.
Look hard enough and random acts of “pay it forward” kindness are everywhere. They’re in our communities, sporting clubs and our workplaces too.
In fact, ScienceDirect noted kindness is making a comeback in a post-pandemic world, and it can have definite benefits for your business in terms of team retention, brand recognition and company culture.
Paying it forward in real estate
In our industry, paying it forward can take a number of forms both inside and beyond our individual businesses.
It can be the mentoring that experienced industry members freely offer, in the knowledge it builds skills, workplace satisfaction and improves the wider reputation of the industry.
It might be the community initiatives we instigate or support, including time spent volunteering, or offering free insight and advice.
It can be the sharing of industry best-practice and collaboration between brands as a way to support other businesses and build a positive image of the wider industry overall.
Either way, it’s giving with the expectation that you won’t necessarily receive something back directly. Instead, it’s paying forward the kindness you have received in the past or giving with the belief it creates benefits for others and the industry as a whole.
And as ScienceDirect explains: “Paying it forward can strengthen relationships between firms and business partners, and it can build a positive corporate culture within an organisation.”
It also leads to improved team wellbeing and potentially results in increased productivity and innovation performance.
This then causes a domino effect in the attraction and retention of talent who then contributes even further innovation and business growth.
Perhaps more importantly, however, when people believe one good deed deserves another, these acts of kindness build exponentially in a community.
Ultimately, “paying it forward” makes the world a better place.
Manos Findikakis is the CEO of Agents’Agency.
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