Public ranks Goodwill® #1

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(You like us. You really, really like us.)

“Jobs,” “donations,” “clothes,” “people,” “help,” “need,” “disabled” … these are the most common words people used to describe Goodwill’s brand purpose when they were surveyed for the annual World Value Index report. For the second year in a row, Goodwill, was rated as the #1 brand (!) in terms of perceived value and purpose – outranking Amazon, Google, Microsoft, and other prestigious organizations. Not too shabby.

Unlike other studies that measure things such as a company’s financial performance, shareholder value, or impact metrics – the World Value Index reveals how American consumers rank the importance of a brand’s mission or purpose, and the extent to which the brand aligns with what they care about and they feel are deserving of support.

The creative agency enso developed the World Value Index in 2016 as a tool for brands to measure the importance of creating “world value” for its audience segments.

“Today, at a time when people have more choices, and greater access to information, the strength of a brand’s purpose is more important than ever,” said Sebastian Buck, enso’s co-founder and strategic lead. “With the World Value Index, our research centers around whether people can identify a brand’s purpose and mission, and the extent to which that purpose reflects society’s values. In other words, the ability of brands like Goodwill to create World Value is a testament to its relevance.”

The gratification that comes with this ranking is it attests to our work and acknowledges that Goodwill’s purpose resonates with the communities that we serve. We are honored to be so highly regarded based on our value, mission, and impact.

To read the full World Value Index report, go to http://enso.co/worldvalue/

 

Goodwill Industries and the American Dream

By Richard Carlson, President and CEO

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The central tenet of the American dream is that if you work hard, you will be able to support yourself and your family, save for retirement, and invest in your children’s future. First described by James Truslow Adams in his book “The Epic of America” in 1931, the American dream is “that dream of a land in which life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement.” He later said that “too many of us have grown weary and mistrustful of it. It is not a dream of motor cars and high wages merely, but a dream of social order in which each man and each woman shall be able to attain the fullest stature of which they are innately capable, and be recognized by others for what they are, regardless of the fortuitous circumstances of birth or position.”

Said another way, John D. Rockefeller Jr., expressed his philosophy of life in a statement of principles in 1941 entitled, “I Believe.”  Among his stated principles is this: “I believe in the dignity of labor, whether with head or hand; that the world owes no man a living but that it owes every man an opportunity to make a living.”

And from our own Goodwill Industries founder Dr. Edgar Helms who said, “Friends of Goodwill, be dissatisfied with your work until every handicapped and unfortunate person in your community has an opportunity to develop to their fullest usefulness and enjoy a maximum of abundant living.”

These are the truths I believe in. These are the truths that I first learned from my parents and grandparents. And these are the truths I discovered when I first joined Goodwill as a young social worker in 1976. It is work that adds dignity to one’s life. It is work that gives a family hope. It is a hard day’s work that builds character and a future. And it is our work that strengthens our communities. That is the mission of Goodwill … changing lives through the power of work. And we see that throughout the organization every day.

I have had the rare and wonderful opportunity to devote my life’s work and career to these same truths and to be part of an organization that truly believes in changing lives through the power of work. Over the course of my 40 years of service with Goodwill we have served more than 190,000 individuals and their families in West Michigan and have placed into competitive employment 21,000 people. At the end of the day, Goodwill has shaped me as much as it has been my honor to have been part of shaping Goodwill.

When I first started my career with Goodwill, I could not have imagined that this would become the dedicated journey that it has become. I am so very grateful to the immensely talented and committed team of employees and board members I have had the pleasure to work with over the years. I am also very aware that we could do nothing were it not for the courage and determination of those we have served who devoted themselves to finding a better life and their own piece of the American dream.

In the end, I will always be grateful for the decades of community support that Goodwill Industries has received. Without you and this remarkable community partnership, we would not be here today.

Make spring cleaning fun (no really!)

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ecluttering has never been more en vogue than right now. But Goodwill was way ahead of the trend, having been a part of people’s spring cleaning routines for more than 100 years! We’re thrilled to partner with certified professional organizer Lorie Marrero to offer five expert tips to make this spring your cleanest yet!

  1. Have a plan. Don’t let unwanted items clutter your home any longer than necessary. Plan to spring clean and take your donations to Goodwill on the same day.
  2. Start with success. Choose the one area of your home that will give you the biggest bang for your buck. Once you succeed there, you’ll be motivated to tackle the next space.
  3. Clean slate. Clear each area out as much as possible and start from scratch. By restocking your shelves with items you love, you’ll make your whole house a happy and inspiring place. And donating your unwanted items to Goodwill helps people find jobs and build their careers.
  4. Make it fun! Shake up your spring cleaning routine with a peppy playlist and fun contests. Challenge everyone in your family to find 10 items to donate to Goodwill. This can become a race, with the prize of a traveling trophy. Or a hot fudge sundae, if you don’t want any more clutter!
  5. Be brave. Inherited items may come with guilt and obligation attached. Instead of keeping the items, take an artistic photograph of them and frame it in your home. Then donate the items to Goodwill. Wouldn’t you rather the items do good by helping people build their employment skills than take up space in your home?

Last year, Goodwill Industries of West Michigan helped 5,431 people find jobs through your donations. We hope tips like these will make spring cleaning more fun for families and more fruitful for organizations like us that provide services throughout our community.

Be Aware of Your Clutter This Week!

By guest blogger Lorie Marrero, author of The Clutter Diet

Evidently the fourth week of March is National Clutter Awareness Week. (Not sure who makes these up, but thank you!) You’re probably keenly aware of the clutter you already have, but this week let’s focus on awareness of how to prevent accumulating more.

There are three kinds of preventable clutter that accumulate in your life:

  • Purchased Clutter. Obviously, this is stuff that you pay money to bring into your home. Slankets (or Snuggies), new boots, season 2 Lost DVDs, magazines, groceries, and all that you spend your hard-earned cash to enjoy. Whether you are standing at the checkout in the store or you are clicking the checkout button online, be mindful as you open your wallet that almost everything you purchase ends up in your home or car or workplace, and it requires some kind of maintenance or attention. You will need to read it, recycle it, replace the batteries in it, fold it, store it, clean it, repair it, or just add it to your piles.
  • Acquired Clutter. Sometimes “clutter happens.”This is physical stuff that you did not have to shell out cash to take home — you either inherited it, received it as a gift or hand-me-down, got it in the mail, brought it home from school or work, or grabbed it as a freebie giveaway item. Regardless of the source, remember you do have the choice of bringing in the door or not.
  • Allowed Clutter. Time and communication clutter are invisible, not physically taking up space, but they are mentally cluttering your life and that can be just as bad. By not being a good steward of your time, you can allow too many commitments to burden you. (See previous post, “Overdoers Anonymous”) And by not managing your emails and phone calls, you allow them to crowd out time from more important tasks you could be doing.

Here are a few tips to help prevent purchased, acquired, or allowed clutter:

  • If you check your mail at a community block of mailboxes or a post office box and they already have a trash can there, stop right there and get rid of any unwanted junk mail before you take it home.
  • We have our wallet reminder sleeves you can download as a bonus item when you get our weekly newsletter — they have the five important Clutter Prevention Questions you should ask before purchasing anything. You can store your favorite credit or debit card in them as a first line of defense when you open your wallet to buy something!
  • Consider alternative gift-giving arrangements in your family, especially in the holiday season. Just kids, no gifts, drawing names…be creative and don’t just buy for everyone because you always have before.
  • Remember that people make their entire life’s work figuring out how to sell things to you, and they are VERY clever. Don’t fall for traps like “free gift with minimum purchase,” or “free shipping” if you were not already going to purchase the minimum number of items in the first place. Be a savvy shopper and be protective of your wallet.
  • Along with ending telemarketing calls quickly and cleanly, be also aware of “friendly fire” phone calls — ones you actually enjoy but take up way too much of your time. If you must chat, get a headset and fold some laundry or clean something while you talk.

And finally, being organized is in itself a great way to prevent further clutter. If you have visibility and knowledge of what you already own, you are unlikely to purchase duplicate or similar items by mistake. I am glad we are having this “awareness” week because as they say, awareness of a problem is the first step in fixing it. If you can be more mindful of what you purchase, acquire, and allow and realize that you always have a choice … you are halfway there!

Want more organizing tips? Start following The Clutter Diet Blog today!

Follow me on Twitter for my Daily #ClutterTweetTip!