I’m here to tell you a story about an idea inspired by one of our partners. It will have a long-lasting effect on our organization, our relationship with our partner ecosystem, and our planet. How about that?
In February 2022, and as part of an ongoing evaluation process where TimeXtender explores our impact in the world under our culture code and our Impact goals, we started a research process to determine how to contribute to the four pillars.
As part of a research process and while scrolling through my LinkedIn feed looking for something else, I noticed a post by Baker Tilly, one of our partners in the Netherlands, had put in motion a new program where they plant a tree for every new colleague. “This is awesome,” I said out loud.
I got all excited about this idea; my head started to spin. “Could we implement this in TimeXtender? What about planting a tree for each partner? Oh yeah, that’s so cool! How about planting a tree for each partner, Xpeople, and new customer? then how about… “I’m sure you can get a sense of where my head went on this rabbit hole.
The power of the crowd
So here I am, having these thoughts and inspiration, making a proposal to my Circle*, calculating tree numbers, cost, CO2 absorption metrics, and then another storm of questions manifested “How can we scale this? if we continue to grow as we are, how can we make sure we don’t lose track of this, and we choose the right partner to help us?”
I’ll be honest; I had my choice. I searched for alternatives, but I couldn’t find anything as good as my option. Let me explain.
I’ve been an Ecosia enthusiast since Carlos, a friend and a small entrepreneur in Spain that cares about sustainable tourism in Aragon, recommended me to use the platform way back in 2015, and yes, I’m taking the liberty to promote his business, I’ve never seen someone so passionate about his region and his company.
For context. Ecosia is a search engine based in Berlin, Germany. It donates 80% of its profits to nonprofit organizations that focus on reforestation.They were the first B-Corp established in Germany.
With Ecosia, you can plant trees while you search the web. It can’t be any easier than that to contribute to a better planet. Ecosia uses the profit they make from your searches to plant trees where they are needed most.
In addition, organizations and individuals can purchase trees directly from Ecosia; they will then engage with their local reforestation partners, working in local communities all around the globe.
At the time of writing this post, Ecosia has planted 146,229,112 trees and counting.
One thing that I love is their approach to transparency. Every month, they publish their financial reports so you can see where the money goes and where it is invested.
By now, I’m sure you understand why I’m a big fan of Ecosia.
The proposal and feedback loops.
So, here I am, writing my original proposal to my Circle. I shared my ideas with them, and they kindly encouraged me to pitch to the Executive team in our Impact the World Forum, a forum in Basecamp where any Xperson (our employees) can use to share Impact initiatives that we may or may not pursue, this is where you can gauge support and get feedback before implementing.
So, after being encouraged by my Circle, I pitched this:
Moving forward, we will:
Plant 100 trees for each newly recruited partner.
Plant 25 trees each time our partners close a deal.
Plant a tree each time we recruit a new Xperson.
Why this initiative?
TimeXtender strives to contribute to 4 Impact Goals, and as you know, one of them is a "sustainable climate for our planet.” This initiative contributes to that goal.
We have a global scope; the more partners we recruit, the larger the scope of the impact.
We are 100% channel-driven. This initiative adds to our mindset.
We have 200+ partners. So our initiative can have an excellent snowball effect, we can encourage them to follow through.
Our Xpeople, we can feel proud of contributing to a better world from day 1 in office.
I confess I was a bit nervous and overexcited; I waited for feedback, while in my mind, I was going through all the possible scenarios where this could not be a good idea; you know how it is sometimes with that annoying imposter syndrome, fella.
Then the Xpeople started to react to it, first with emojis, then with comments, so I could see the idea was gaining momentum; I got a sense of relief.
Heine, our CEO, endorsed the idea with a “yes and” as he classically does.
Heine asked not only to increase the original number of trees planted that I proposed (wahoo!) but also to make sure we track our efforts accordingly in a dashboard. That, of course, didn’t surprise me, you know, being a data company and all that.
Heine also asked to ensure we establish a long-term vision to continue with the initiative that we code-named Xplanet.
Today and as part of the Earth Day and Earth Month initiatives, I’m STOKED to communicate that TimeXtender planted 2500 trees in March 2022 in partnership with Ecosia.
We consider this the first of a series of initiatives towards a positive impact on our planet and societies. Expect more.
Today, more than ever, we encourage every single one of our partners to act through Ecosia or other means and make their mark in Earth month, especially in the lead to Earth Day, this upcoming 22nd April.
You know the saying, “The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second-best time is now.”