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
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.”
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)…
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
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.