January 19, 2021
Charity first
Each year I give one-percent of gross revenues to nonprofit charities. I like to give what I call the first one-percent to charity, not a percent of what’s left over after expenses.

This is because my company operates in a community where many supports allow me to be successful. A healthy environment and healthy people are foundational for the success of my business, not an afterthought. My community is the ground on which my company stands. I’m happy to take 1% right off the top and give it to charities in my community. I wish every company did that.

All of us are forced to give to our communities through taxes. Most tax money goes to buy stuff to help the government run, but some gets sent back out into communities to help the more needy among us. Think funding for public education, public housing, food assistance, health care, transportation subsidies, and in many other ways.
A great resource ---->

I actually like paying taxes with the thought that the money is helping my community. I’m one of those weirdos who pays taxes joyfully. It’s a way to help the team.

When I hear people complain against paying taxes the argument sometimes goes something like this. ”I believe in helping people in need, I just don’t think the government should decide where my money goes. I would rather give my money to...
Here's what I heard
Starting a sentence with "You said...." is a set-up for conflict. Arguing about who said what achieves nothing and escalates conflict.

Two-minute clip from a speech I gave in Sante Fe a few years ago.

And transcript
Two Fat Cats Bakery of Portland, Maine knows how to craft harmony from lots of mixed flavors. Have you tried their pies?

Today your purchase of a mixed berry pie supports donations to Make Shift Coffee House and our work to build harmony and heal divisions in your community!

Order yours now at twofatcatsbakery.com
South Portland
Police Services Review
Working Group

Each week I feature one of my clients to give you a peek into my work world of really great people and stories.

In the wake of the George Floyd killing and Black Lives Matter protests last summer, the South Portland City Council established a multi-stakeholder Working Group to look for evidence of escalated police response in South Portland and make recommendations as to whether there should be changes to how certain calls for service are responded to by the City.
I serve as the Working Group's neutral third-party facilitator. We meet every two weeks. The Working Group includes the Police Chief, the Fire Chief, other City Department Heads, three residents, and a City Councilor. We have encouraged public input and the group has had seven meetings to date. You can access all our meeting agendas and notes right here.

For those interested in process, here are our Operating Guidelines. Before we even met as a group, I had one-on-one phone conversations with each member of the Working Group to ask them their goals, concerns, and to get to know each person a bit.

We are due to present our Findings and Recommendations to the City Council on February 16. We have been working well together and it looks like we are on track for group consensus on a set of helpful recommendations.

If interested, check out this annotated list of all my Clients, by type or by year.
To Help You Get Along
Written and published by Craig Freshley. Thanks for walking along with me.
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