Athena’s tears fell freely as she painted a picture of her past. Her vulnerability washed over us – nearly 400 sales professionals sat motionless, mouth agape, eyes brimming with tears. Fathers balled their fists in anger at the sheer injustice of her childhood and mothers wept at the tragedy of innocence lost.
We sat in a room filled with our peers. Looking around, I could see that all were feeling the weight of what do. We earn a living providing critical tools and systems to business owners large and small, but that’s not what we really do.
What we really do is plant seeds of opportunity through mentorship and hope. What we really do is provide the ink and paper to the most vulnerable segment of America’s youth so they may write their own story.
Like last year, I witnessed the connection formed between a career at Beyond and purpose. Our second annual Bash, this time entitled Out of the Woods was a celebration of our success as a company. To grow from nothing to over $7 billion in volume is a herculean accomplishment. Our success as a company is, frankly, incredible.
What I was fortunate enough to see was all of our rookies, veterans, c-suite, leaders, and support staff witness what it means to be successful as a benefactor.
As we bore witness to the story of a father systematically dismantling the humanity of his daughter and her sister through abuse, we were hardened. Not hardened in the way Athena was, a scar built up over wounds almost healed. We were hardened as steel is hardened by heat and pressure. Our edge was sharpened.
We matter to our customers and to our company, and what we do at Beyond allows children who have been forgotten to matter… to be… to emerge.
What we do matters.
Red, tear-filled eyes, transformed into the steely gaze of resolve. Backs straightened and shoulders pushed back under the weight of obligation. My team sat straighter and found a new level of depth to which they could dig. We have an obligation to be successful.
Athena is just one of 1,000 stories being changed by Give Back. One thousand stories that will now end differently because of the financial impact of Beyond.
Athena will be attending college and will graduate debt-free through her Give Back scholarship. And once she graduates, she just might change the world.