Working for Good

Friend of HOW Sam Harrison (catch his Creativity column in the upcoming issue of the magazine or see him at the Conference in Denver) attended TEDxAtlanta yesterday and brought us news of an organization I’d not previously heard of. Goods for Good is a nonprofit that takes surplus merchandise and materials that are just sitting in warehouses of U.S. companies and puts them in the hands of needy children around the world. For example, the government of Malawi has made primary-school education mandatory, yet the schools lack enough supplies to support that many students, and kids and teachers cite lack of materials as a major factor in dropouts. Enter Goods for Good, which procured overstock items in the U.S. to supply the classrooms.

Sam told us:

At TEDxAtlanta, Goods for Good founder Melissa Kushner discussed fives principles she uses in her work, and these could be easily applied to any type of design project.
1. Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good.
Seeking perfection can freeze us from doing anything at all. Just do your best to do good.
2. Don’t assume your client’s needs are the same as your own.
Live with clients’ problems and solicit their ideas before you go marching in issuing solutions.
3. Don’t measure all success with the same yardstick.
What worked brilliantly for one situation might be a disaster in another situation.
4. Partnership is paramount to success.
Connect and collaborate with all stakeholders for maximum success.
5. Share knowledge and leverage resources.
Ideas die without circulation–and combined resources frequently solve problems that might otherwise be insurmountable.

TEDxAtlanta was hosted for the second year by the Atlanta strategy & design firm Unboundary.

Posted by Bryn