BUILD. NOT BILLED.
BUI LDING BLOCKS
share and client base. Dan and Gravity Payments set an example. The company even experienced a baby boom following the wage increase. People felt comfortable starting families. And on top of that, a lot of their employees bought homes. They stopped renting, found homes, and settled down. It all came down to the simple fact that they could realistically afford it. I’ve been able to correspond with Dan recently, and I’ve learned a lot about giving back. Dan created something worth emulating. It’s a lesson every business can learn from. It’s not about paying every employee a minimum of $70,000. It’s about setting that example, making a difference, investing in people. Dan’s company was transformed for the better, but more importantly, its employees were transformed for the better — and through the employees, the community, too, was transformed. Since establishing Love Law Firm, I have made it my own mission to give back and to make a difference. Let me tell you a little story. My daughter was born premature. She was at St. Francis Hospital for several weeks as she continued to develop and get stronger so she could come home. When she was born, she was so small that we had no clothes to fit her. Thankfully, St. Francis kept clothes on hand — clothes that had been donated from the community. Seeing my daughter in them was a source of pure comfort. She looked so comfy and safe, wrapped in warmth, not just covered in hospital monitors and tubes. That was the difference a piece of clothing made. The first quarter after my firm opened its doors, I made sure St. Francis Hospital had dozens of new outfits available for other babies to derive comfort from. Our firm helped older kids, as well. My family and my spouse’s family are big believers in adoption. Family is based on love, not genetics — and all children need love. We both have family members who have adopted out of the foster care system. In talking with them, we learned that these children often arrived at their new home with all of their belongings in nothing more than a plastic garbage bag. Children need to know that they are not disposable and that they are worth more than this. It was a small start, but we held a drive to collect duffel bags and supplies to fill the bags. These items included toiletries, stuffed animals, and anything that would tell a child someone cares and is thinking of them. T O G E T H E R
Let’s Make a World of Difference
I t’s the season of
giving back — to the government, that is! As the yearly duty of filing
taxes kicks into high gear, I wanted to focus on an aspect of giving that’s more meaningful and certainly more personal: giving back to the community.
One of my philosophies is that every business should not only benefit the entrepreneur or business
owner, it should benefit its employees and community as well. If a company can’t or won’t contribute to the greater good in some measure, that company shouldn’t exist. Most businesses do provide an immediate societal benefit simply by existing. Businesses create jobs for their respective communities. Their employees can then contribute to the local economy. But far too many businesses exist to meet the bare minimums — paying only a minimum wage, not providing benefits — and the overall benefit for the community reflects it. Ultimately, these businesses are unremarkable. And being unremarkable has never been my personal goal. For newer businesses — and certainly those that are coming right out of the gate — it might not be feasible to immediately offer those wages and benefits, but it should always be a goal. As you ramp up and the business takes off, make those changes. One of my heroes is Dan Price, the CEO and co-founder of Gravity Payments. You may have heard about Dan and his Seattle-based company. In 2015, he garnered worldwide attention when he cut his $1.1 million salary and raised the base pay at Gravity Payments to $70,000 for every single position. This move was nothing short of remarkable. Many detractors called Dan out for making a huge mistake. They said his company was doomed. But Gravity Payments didn’t fail. In fact, the company — and its employees — prospered.
Employee retention went through the roof, naturally. Companies from around the world wanted to work with the trendsetting firm, increasing its market
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