Corporate Social Responsibility
These four elements are at the core of all that I do. Often acknowledged, it is not always put into action in the workplace.
I want to change this.
I offer a unique insight into lives that most people will never experience, in turn unbeknown to the listener, they reflect upon their own, practising the skill of perspective taking, empathy and solidifying their purpose in life.
Imagine a workplace where empathy was a practiced core value, where employees look out for each other, where people go above and beyond for each other's wellbeing, that's a place everyone would love to work - and stay in.
Perspective leads to good decisions
Our perspective comes from our own life experiences; hence it governs our decisions and our emotions.
Broadening that perspective can therefore ultimately lead to better decisions in the workplace.
The stories I share are truly moving and powerful. Offering a perspective unseen by the majority of people across the World yet can still relate to our own, everyday lives.
If you can understand the perspective of someone at the bottom of Maslow's 'Hierarchy of Needs' you can then have the capacity to understand almost anyone's; including friends and colleagues around you. That's a workplace culture that most people would want to be a part of.
Empathy is not easy. Sympathy is. Sympathy does not form strong relationships however, which is why instilling a culture of empathy is vital for success. Empathy is listening and actually caring, it builds trust, love and powerful relationships - whatever race, religion, creed or socio-economic background someone is from.
An environment of understanding, where people genuinely care, where colleagues have each others backs, where people complain less is only built when empathy is practised and perspective taken into consideration.
Through stories I educate listeners on how to exercise empathy with the most vulnerable in our society. They help us relate and understand others, reflect on our own lives, give us gratitude and sometimes even empower us to change and make a small difference.
Empathy can unite
Purpose is motivation
My projects have allowed me to discover the importance of purpose to one's life. It shapes everything we do, the decisions we make and what we put our time and energy into. It goes beyond a salary and status, purpose gives us our identity.
I've seen, particularly during the 2018 Homeless World Cup in Mexico, the power that a joint purpose has, the joy that belonging to something can bring and how important being part of society can be.
Businesses rely on a common purpose that employees believe in. For many of us, it's one of the reasons we join that company in the first place. Day to day life can blind us from our own purpose but stories of other's lives and resilience in carrying out their purpose can reignite our own.
Millennials will, in the next few years, make up 50% of the work force. What bridges the gap between the 'Baby Boomers' , 'Generation X', the 'Millenials' and even the emerging 'iGen' - culture.
An effective workplace culture will incorporate all of the above: perspective, empathy and purpose. They intertwine to build a culture that brings people together with common beliefs, ideals and a supportive network. Business also has a duty to do good. A common cause, external to work-related goals can unify everyone, sustain the need for many to have an impact in and outside the workplace and create a positive culture. After all, 88% of millennials worldwide say their job is more fulfilling when they are provided opportunities to make a positive impact on social and environmental issues.
I have amazing and untold stories of people so breathtakingly resilient, inspirational, purpose-led and human. These stories can inspire, unite and educate anyone. If heard in a workplace, they can unify people to support a common cause, make individuals reflect on how they can be more empathetic to their colleagues going through a challenging time - even offer to help them out. The effects span beyond the length of the story told.
"Ed’s talk last summer inspired a homelessness drive with people throughout the company. It led to 3 events in London supporting local initiatives to help the Homeless; volunteering at food banks, donating clothing items and joining a ‘walkaround’ with Clothes for Causes. He is a passionate and motivated speaker who has truly influenced people to volunteer their time to help tackle homelessness in London."
Accenture Interactive Social Impact Team
Self - Acualisation
Belongingness and love needs
Masolw's Hierarchy of Needs (1943)
Maslow : A theory of Human Motivation (1943)
Maslow's hierarchy of needs is a powerful tool in training yourself to be more empathetic and yield a greater perspective.
We all lead such 'busy' lives that for most of us we lose track of where we fit within the triangle. More importantly, we lose track of where others in our society around us are. Even our colleagues on the desks around us.
People can seem that they have fulfilled all the needs and are working towards their potential (self-actualisation). Yet they maybe suffering from lack of self-esteem.
With regards to homelessness, most don't even fufill the physiological needs. No food, water, shelter or sanitation. Yet as passers by we expect them to be motivated, get a job and stop begging. Using Maslow's triangle, I can show people a different perspective which can change attitudes.
WHAT PEOPLE SAY
"Ed is one of those rare influencers who can inspire and educate you with his stories, passion and purpose but also leaves you feeling transformed and determined to make a difference on your own life too.
After hearing Ed speak at our office for just 20 minutes, I was touched by the personal stories and now I understand exactly what I can do to help the homeless people I see. Now I feel so much better about stopping to give food, water, change and simply acknowledge these people in need. I would strongly recommend meeting Ed, inventing him to speak at your events and supporting the incredibly compassionate work he is doing."
— Andrew Whelan, Innovation and Extended Reality Lead