Boosting office morale by giving back to others

When giving back to the community, especially in difficult times, is part of your office culture, it uplifts those you work with as well as those you’re helping. 

While one person in the office can decide to write a check to a charitable organization on behalf of the company, it doesn’t have the same morale-boosting effect on the office as an entire team’s involvement. An employee council is one way to encourage office staff participation in deciding where charitable donations and volunteer time goes.

Stephen Kagawa, FSS, LUTCF,  a 27-year MDRT member from Monrovia, California, established an employee council to determine and organize how his company gives back to their community. For Kagawa, it fosters happiness among his team, whose skill and care bring to life his vision and his company’s mission.

Maximizing giving

Stephen Kagawa

Stephen Kagawa with the Clean the World hygiene kits.

During the 2020 MDRT Annual Meeting and Global Conference Virtual Event, Kagawa’s employee council aligned its efforts with the MDRT Foundation in support of Clean the World Foundation (CTWF). Donors whose gifts were $1,000 or more had the opportunity to complete a service project of assembling and distributing hygiene kits (composed of shampoo, soap, toothpaste and other toiletries) to local organizations.

Kagawa saw this as an opportunity to engage his staff and continue building a relationship with a local non-profit, Foothill Unity Center, which assists low-income families. Before COVID-19, Kagawa and his staff volunteered at Foothill and felt they were the ideal recipient of the hygiene kits. 

“It’s always a humbling experience to give at Foothill Unity Center, and I’m grateful for the opportunity to give my time to an organization dedicated to serving our local communities,” said one-year MDRT member Isabel Nguyen, of Monrovia.

packing hygiene kits

Creating hygiene kits for a local non-profit

Kagawa’s colleague, Sheri Chan, took the lead on this project, which joined together approximately 20 staff members, including one-year MDRT member and Court of the Table qualifier Stephanie Nagami and 14-year MDRT member and Top of the Table qualifier Hozumi Hanada, LUTCF, both of Monrovia. In addition to assembling their 50 CTWF hygiene kits, staff created an additional 150 hygiene kits on their own by donating supplies. Furthermore, Kagawa’s company offered an employee match. Overall, they donated $2,500 to Foothill Unity Center.

Kagawa, a Top of the Table qualifier, encourages other MDRT members to make a difference in their community. It boosts office morale, and it elevates the reputation of financial advisors within the community they serve. 

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