This website uses cookies. By using the website you consent to cookie files being saved in your web browser, according to the browser's setting.

THE FOUNDATION FOR CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY IS A NETWORK OF 90 INTERNATIONAL CORPORATE CEOs ACTIVELY WORKING IN POLAND TO AFFECT POSITIVE SOCIAL CHANGE THROUGH CORPORATE PHILANTHROPY. COLLECTIVELY WE HAVE FED OVER 4 MILLION HOT MEALS (60,000 PER MONTH) TO SOME OF POLAND’S MOST NEEDY CHILDREN. OUR MISSION IS TO LEAD THE BUSINESS COMMUNITY IN RAISING THE LEVEL AND QUALITY OF CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

March 14, 2011, Vol. 8, No. 7

"It's easy to make a buck. It's a lot tougher to make a difference”

- Tom Brokaw

TEAM BUILDING WITH A PURPOSE – THE CARGILL MODEL

Most of us have participated in some form of team building during our professional careers. You know how it works… You go off for a day or even a weekend with a group of fellow employees. You perform an assignment or two that will challenge your ability to work together. You all remember your favorite. One friend remembered his team building a boat that never did float. Well, you leave the team building event a little fatter, a little closer to your contemporaries, and you leave behind, the product of your endeavors, a boat that won’t float.

Now, envision this Cargill team building exercise… Twenty-five up-and-coming Cargill junior executives arrived in the middle of nowhere; in a place we call the PromiseLand located in northwest Poland. They didn’t know each other, and hailed from homes in China, Switzerland, Brazil, Spain, Russia, Egypt, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, UK, South Africa, Hungary and Denmark. They were joined by a work group of 10 Polish Cargill employees from Warsaw.

The new arrivals were first introduced to each other, given 20,000 PLN to work with, and told to remodel 4 elementary school classrooms in two different schools located 20 km apart. Now, for the best part, they were given 30 hours to complete their projects and prepare two hand-over ribbon-cutting ceremonies, complete with refreshments, for the PromiseKids, teachers and parents. They had to fend for themselves in this unfamiliar country without the help of our Foundation’s staff or consulting mechanical engineers. They had to find their own supplies, raw materials, carpets, lighting fixtures, tools and paint. They had to arrange for their own transportation, meals, and schedules all from the money they were provided.

They built their teams and succeeded in their tasks.

The first ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Nielep PromiseLand School was held on time at 1300 on Thursday afternoon. The second ribbon-cutting ceremony was held just on time at 1500 at the Nowe Worowo PromiseLand School.

I won’t try to tell you what this team building experience meant to the Cargill trainees, the schools, teachers or kids. I will let Roger Watchorn, General Manager of Cargill Poland do this in the letter he sent to all participants below. I will say that there were no “empty boats that don’t float left behind.”

LETTER FROM CARGILL GM ROGER WATCHORN TO PARTICIPANTS

First of all let me simply say ‘Thank you very much’ to all of you for what you just accomplished this week in the schools near Swidwin. I am sure most of you had no idea what to expect and wondered why I was asking us to do this during such a busy time of year but I believe each of us came away learning and experiencing something of significant value. Last night on the way home Jarek asked me if I could now tell him what my objectives were for this event because I had not stated it clearly before. My objectives were the following (but not in any specific order)…

  1. To show the team what the Foundation is doing to help the Promiseland children and hopefully engage you as promoters of this outreach opportunity not only within our business but also to the Polish business community. As we all know, General Managers will be replaced over time but the support for the Foundation should be from ALL of our business if we believe it is a good cause. Dan Burke and I both have special feelings for the FCSR program, people and especially the kids. I hope that you do now as well.
  2. To try and help our team understand more clearly the importance that businesses and especially, their people, have in helping the community. This is a core part of who Cargill is and what the original family members want us to be known for. This means not only giving of money because that is the easy part. It means being an example of ‘helping your neighbor’ through the 3 things that we value the most...our TIME, TALENTS, and TREASURES. In our business we manage this through our Cargill Cares program and at the moment I believe we need to raise the focus and engagement in this area with all of our teams. That starts ‘at the top’ with each of us managers first understanding why we do this and then modeling the right behaviors for others.
  3. To remember the challenges that our employees feel everyday as we run our business. We designed this program especially so that our Polish team would not be leading the project but would have to respond to different leadership styles trying to lead us. I knew it would be difficult but we need to sometimes be reminded of how our leadership styles impact our employees. We will talk more about this next week but I wanted us to have a small experience of what it is like to be the ‘production’ employees again.
  4. To help bring our team closer together as we prepare to ‘go-to-market’ with many strategic changes in our business. We have several new members on our team and I wanted the team to be able to quickly build some new relationships and reinforce existing ones.
  5. To help the children of the Promiseland!

Personally I felt that all 5 of these objectives were not only met, but exceeded my expectations. It was easy to see the engagement and teamwork of our group as you worked under extreme pressure and clearly there were some key reminders on how to lead our teams. The impact of the polish team on the project was HUGE! Your comments already show an incredible passion and energy around the FCSR program and what Cargill’s role in the ‘Promiseland’ and in the communities in which we operate should be. Finally, as Bill stated so very well yesterday, you have left a legacy for the children and people of these two communities. In the future the rooms will be repainted and the carpets changed but the impression that you made on the children, teachers and parents as they saw what a few caring people and a committed company like Cargill can do will last! Take pride in what you have accomplished and remember how it feels.

Thanks so much…Roger

DATES TO REMEMBER

March 25, 2011 - Spring CEO Breakfast Team Building with Purpose – 0830, InterContinental Hotel, make reservations today! We have 50 reservations so far! The InterContinental gang led by Christian Henkemeier is preparing a special breakfast just for you!

April 21- Advisory Council Meeting, Warsaw Marriott Hotel at 0830.

July 1-3- InterContinental Hotel Scholars Program in Warsaw.

August 2-13, 2011 - The Reagan Legacy Foundation’s Liberty Education Tour in California. We will select two PromiseKids to attend.

THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK

"Life is a series of commas, not periods."

- Matthew McConaughey

Newsletters