How Could You Lead With $50?


How Could You Lead With $50

Leigha Beckman stunned me – in a happy way last week. She’s an intern and we’ve tasked her to bring a fresh, analytical approach to “Reading for Leading.” Next week we’ll send you her survey to help me keep RFL relevant and excellent for you. But last week, as I said, she jolted me when she asked me this question, “What if you showed your belief in RFL readers by handing out money to them? You know, like the priest did at your church?”

I loved the idea. I’m on it. Last week I invited you to affirmatively and proactively demonstrate belief in your peeps by giving them money with the simple invitation to “make things better around here.” Of course the “here” of RFL is a virtual space. It’s not quite like a church or a family or an office. But we are, I always hope, a learning community. And so, I believe you can help us all learn.

I’m going to give $50 to ten readers who would like (to use the metaphor from church:) take an envelope out of the collection basket and do something good with it. No strings. No accounting. Just an invitation to you to, in turn, demonstrate belief in others. And a second invitation to share how it goes with our readers. It would be cool if you reported back what you notice in yourself and others – what happens.

If you’re interested, just hit the “comment” button below and write, “I’m interested.” We’ll randomly select 10 names at noon tomorrow and be in touch to figure out how to get you the money and this wonderfully odd chance to

Lead with your best self!


P.S. If you missed last week here were some of my idea starters for what someone might do with some “belief money.”

What might YOU do with $50? Buy a phone headset to serve customers better. Give a frustrated customer a break. Give your $50 – or pool it with others’ – to help someone in the office who is struggling to make ends meet. Give the receptionist flowers. Buy a printer to replace the one that’s driving everyone crazy. Spend it on a software program that will let them do better design. Host a small reception for a customer, a 10-year employee anniversary, or a mom or dad returning to work after having a baby. Send Starbucks cards to customers or staff who’ve been great to work with. Be creative!!!  By the way, in the world of Everyday Leadership, you don’t have to ask for the “leaders” of the company to do this; you can lead, yes with your own money.

P.P.S.  As to using your own money, check out the very cool comment from Bill Hart; it’s the first comment last week.

  • I would give the money to Friends School in Detroit for their monthly networking breakfast (4th Thursday of the month). The school has had a rough couple of years; however, they are headed in the right direction with increase enrollment, parent participation and fundraising. The monthly breakfast is not a fundraising activity or a solicitation but an informational forum to let people know about this hidden Gem. The breakfast get-together is to ensure that as many people as possible know about this wonderful school that stresses academic excellence, creative problem solving, social justice, and respect for the individual and the community.

  • I’m interested. I would use the money to provide supplies for Life of Lake Superior Youth Progam, a summer outdoor education program for 8-14 year olds in Alger County.

  • I’m interested. I’m a high school teacher, and sadly, our beloved principal died unexpectedly a few weeks ago. Our principal firmly believed that all students can be successful and had a knack for instilling goodness in all. Because of his leadership skills, the staff and students at our school have vowed to continue helping others and keep this goodness alive. Coincidentally, I am showing a short video in class tomorrow called the “Power of One” to show students that each and every one of us can make a difference. I would use the $50 as seed and “motivational” money to show students that one small idea can be multiplied many times when people work together toward a common goal. Many in our Michigan community are hurting right now and there is much we can do. The real lesson is that everyone can do something and that everyone can lead in some small way. While the $50 does not make or break our school-wide effort from occurring, the story that goes along with this gift would be inspiring for many.

    • Well, if this were based on merit, rather than random selection…
      Thanks so much for sharing the stories, including the story of your school’s “vow.” What a tribute to your principal, of whom the Jews so beautifully would say, “he of blessed memory…”

  • Sir, that is really, really nice of you to give $50.00 each to 10 people but I would of just either buy the goods for or donate it to a homeless shelter, food bank, etc., some place that could use it instead of giving it to people that probably would just spend it on cigarettes and beer. Not to put your fans down but…. Maybe it’s just my family that would use it for the purposes I mentioned. I hope that I didn’t say anything wrong, sir.

    • Buffy Fay,
      It will be interesting if your name is drawn from the hat to see . . . how much beer and how many packs of cigarettes . . . or, no . . . it is ? ? ? well, what WILL your story be?
      Stay tuned. Drawing today. Over 80 interested folks now.

  • I’m interested.

    May I suggest Coffee and Friend’s Café who is totally in Michigan or a Biggby Gift Card. Instead of sending our money to Washington State . . . let’s keep it in Michigan!!!

  • I’m interested. Watched you and Jennifer on C-Span a few weeks ago. Also am catching her on “Current”. Think you both are great!! I’m glad my friend sent me this website.

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