Submitted by: Mike Dahl, Executive Director, Broad Street Ministry

The New Year – Promise and Possibility

The beginning of the year is often a time to reach out to others, to make a plan for the year’s charitable contributions, and to step into our resolutions for the new year.  As leaders in business, it’s also a critical time to consider the pathways that will strengthen your impact and the reach of your brand.  The good news is these endeavors – action and reflection – do not need to be mutually exclusive.

At Broad Street Ministry we work to transform our city, our institutions, and ourselves by embracing the needs of our most vulnerable sisters and brothers.  This work requires both deep personal and corporate reflection and strategic action.  For us, the result of these efforts is radical hospitality, an approach in which growth is measured in generosity and fears of scarcity are dispelled by sharing.  These core beliefs have helped Broad Street Ministry grow into a respected center of services for those who lack adequate resources and a thought leader in the areas of poverty, equity, and social justice.  The embrace of radical hospitality is central to our success – a success we build upon every day.  Through it, we have learned that when faced with the ever-growing challenge of poverty in our city, we can strengthen ourselves as we strengthen the most vulnerable in our community.

In this spirit, as we welcome the new year, I outline three key questions to consider as a helpful framework in radical hospitality for growing your success in the community: (1) How does my business serve as a model of social responsibility? (2) As a leader, how am I building teamwork, cohesion, and on-going growth in my team? and (3) What is my personal investment in Philadelphia – how do I contribute to the good of others?

Engaging these questions and working with a nonprofit organization that addresses poverty and marginalization may be a powerful avenue to strengthen your business’s impact and reach in Philadelphia in 2019.

Social Responsibility:  Strengthening Human Capital in the Community

How does your business address the needs of the community?  How do you leverage your social network to make a difference in Philadelphia?  Consider the ways you direct your charitable resources.  Do they make a lasting impact on our city?  Do they address deeply rooted issues?  Do they highlight your leadership in the betterment of Philadelphia?  If you are looking for ways to develop these areas for your business, you may consider getting involved with the board of a nonprofit organization or making a financial contribution to a charity that addresses issues of poverty and marginalization in Philadelphia.  Your involvement in such groups associates your brand with community development and social change; it also makes a real difference in the lives of people who need it most.  If you are looking for ways to get involved, you may be interested in our Hospitality and Corporate Council or in the corporate sponsorship of our noontime meal.

Strengthening Your Team

Our businesses are only as strong as those who take on the day-to-day challenges inherent in our work.  In what ways do you invest in your team?  How do you help to build cohesiveness among your employees?  Strengthen the bonds of your team through shared efforts in helping the community.  Volunteer together.  Fundraise together.  Learn more about how to treat others (and one another) with radical hospitality.  If you are not sure how to do this, Broad Street Ministry can offer creative corporate retreats, opportunities to volunteer, and special trainings in our unique approach to radical hospitality.

Reaching Out – Making a Personal Investment

Business leaders lead by example.  What is your personal investment in Philadelphia?  How do you spend your personal time and resources in making our city a better place?  How is your giving of time and talent an example to others?  As you contemplate resolutions for the new year, don’t forget to include your own personal outreach to the community around you.

If you would like more information about Broad Street Ministry and radical hospitality, sign up here for our newsletter or contact Ann-Therese Ortíz, Senior Community Engagement Manager at atortiz@broadstreetministry.org. Together, let’s make Philadelphia a better place.