May '19

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42 THE SHOP MAY 2019 A pril 12, 1776: a man named Paul Revere went racing across the Mas- sachusetts countryside shouting "the British are coming, the British are coming!" Historically we know this as the "Midnight Ride of Paul Revere." The funny thing about that is when we really analyze who Paul Revere was, we find out that he wasn't a professional horse rider, he wasn't a media member and, in fact, he wasn't even part of the Colonial Army. He was simply a willing volunteer who felt strongly about a cause and thus, at the late hour of midnight, he was ready to do his duty and warn the locals of the oncoming danger. Giving of your resources, whether it be any- thing from money to time, can be a rewarding venture. How many times have you done something nice for someone and felt good about it? It's a long-lasting human element. In our businesses, giving can be ongoing, but at times we need to diversify this giving back so that it keeps us refreshed. There's no doubt been times you did something above and beyond for an employee, but that isn't the type of giving I'm referencing. Neither are the countless charity or sponsorship opportunities that come across your desk asking for some type of financial help. What I am referring to is how you can give back to the industry that has afforded you a lifestyle to do something you love while still being able to pay the bills. All of us focus on ways to grow or maintain our businesses and continually look for an advantage. In my experience, if you just take some time out of your work schedule to help other individuals or an industry organization, you gain life lessons and help that pay dividends when you go back to your business. DO WHAT YOU CAN Our industry has many associations, coun- cils and networks in need of volunteers. Organizations such as SEMA, MERA, etc., provide opportunities for industry profes- sionals to donate their time and talents. For years I didn't even realize there were opportunities to help out and volunteer. Once I did find out, however, it was a natural fit for me to get more involved and give back. At first, I was worried about the time and travel commitments, but I quickly realized I could choose to do as much or as little as my schedule and life would allow. Being a volunteer is great because giving what you can is always enough, and is always appreciated. The other great thing about volunteering in our industry is that the biggest thing these organizations are looking for is simply our knowledge and opinions. Getting a conglomerate of industry professionals together and discussing problems, successes and goals can benefit everyone in the after- market—whether they realize it or not. Any effort made up of volunteers who are involved daily in the industry and who care enough to share their thoughts and experiences is bound to succeed. So, can you make yourself available? Do you have even one hour a month that you could be on a conference call or do an interview or jump on a webinar and possibly help with giving your insight on an important issue? If so, then reach out to an organization you are familiar with and ask about volun- teer opportunities. It's that simple. I also believe that if you enjoy giving back to the industry you are a part of, then you should also entertain the idea of vol- unteering for other parts of your life that bring you joy and satisfaction. It could be helping young people through sports or 42 THE SHOP MAY 2019 By Josh Poulson The Joy of Giving Volunteering is a way to benefit the industry & your business. Groups such as the SEMA Businesswomen's Network are great ways to reach out to peers and give back. (Photo courtesy SEMA) Our industry has many associations, councils and networks in need of volunteers.

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