One glance at any of the Forbes Lists is enough to send anybody into an existential tizzy. From the wealthiest to the most influential, these lists can be very intimidating.
Except, there is ONE list* – that of the world’s biggest givers – that is sure to inspire. From Bill Gates to Azim Premji, Warren Buffet to Michael Dell, it lists the world’s most largehearted people and just reading through the causes they support begs the question: What motivates these people to give to charity?
Turns out, authors Prince & File have already answered this question. In their book, The Seven Faces of Philanthropy*, they list out the 7 personalities of philanthropists and their motivations for giving.
Which one describes you best?
1. Communitarians - Doing Good Makes Sense[caption id="attachment_4835" align="aligncenter" width="960"] J S Partibhan: Helped beggars to open bank accounts, transformed lives[/caption]
Are you the only person who volunteered to be the president of the Flat Owner’s Association? Did you lead the movement on cleaning up the local lakes? Looks like you are a communitarian! You, like, J. S. Parthiban, do good things for the community because it’s the most logical thing to do and you don’t see what the big deal is.
2. The Devout - Doing Good is God’s Will[caption id="attachment_4840" align="aligncenter" width="960"] Doing good is God's will: What better reason to give to charity![/caption]
If your response to somebody praising your success is, “Yeh sab bhagwaan ki den hai,” you, my friend, are The Devout. You believe that the Lord works in mysterious ways and those ways pass through you. You are the “anonymous” on the list of donors because you would not dream of giving your name for something that was the doing of the Almighty.
3. The Investor - Doing Good Is Good Business[caption id="attachment_4843" align="aligncenter" width="960"] Meena Ganesh: Serial entrepreneur & angel investor who gives to charity by investing in social change[/caption]
While making a donation, do you look for the words, “All donations 50% exempt from tax under section 80G?” That makes you The Investor. You are doing a world of good, and making a wise investment decision at the same time. It is probably why find yourself drawn to platforms like Milaap, where the money you give is not just a donation but a fund that is paid back over time and re-lent to help others. A win-win situation indeed!
4. The Socialite - Doing Good Is Fun[caption id="attachment_4849" align="aligncenter" width="960"] Who says you can't club a fun evening out with bringing 'Hope' - The launch of the Milaap, Indian Crowdfunding Platform project in Singapore.
You are a socialite if you wear all the wrist bands you’ve collected over the years, if your idea of an ideal weekend is a charity walk, and if you have never missed out on any hashtag campaign that stormed the Internet. You probably belong to a kitty group that is charity oriented, or you are planning on using your next long distance cycling expedition to raise funds for your favorite cause.
5. The Altruist - Doing Good Feels RightPoop Guy, Swapnil Chaturvedi: Cleans toilets in rural India so women can have their dignity back.
Altruists are those who join millions for a candle light vigil. They are people who can’t bear to keep quiet when they see injustice or social imbalance. They are like Swapnil Chaturvedi aka ‘The Poop Guy’, who will leave behind their cushy jobs and dedicate their lives to a cause. Altruists are the mad ones who are driven by passion and do good because their gut tells them that it is the right thing to do.
6. The Repayer - Doing Good in ReturnSourabh Sharma, Anoj Vishwanathan, Mayukh Choudhury: Wanted to give back. So they created a platform where "what you give literally comes back to you!"
You want to help develop the village where you have the fondest memories of your childhood. You want to help educate the grand-children of your nanny who spent sleepless nights taking care of you as a kid. You are a firm believer in Karma and you are certain that what goes around comes around. That makes you the Repayer. You never forget a good deed when you see one.
7. The Dynast - Doing Good Is a Family TraditionAzara & Cyrus Patel: 2nd generation givers. Gave their piggy bank money to their mom's fundraiser for trafficked women. You needn't be the heir to millions to be 'The Dynast' who gives to charity.
Some of us come from a long line of Givers. Giving is a tradition that is followed without a second thought. The Dynasts may run trusts and charitable organizations, but not all of us are born as one. Some of us are the torch bearers of the tradition of giving in our family and we are doing it in every small way that we can.
Whatever be your motivations for giving, you don’t have to wait till you are a millionaire to do so. Giving does not diminish what you have. You'll be surprised that giving, in fact, replenishes your riches. So start now!*Credits:Forbes list of 23 billion dollar givers: http://www.forbes.com/pictures/eilm45eijj/bill-gates-u-s/The Seven Faces of Philanthrophy: http://www.amazon.com/The-Seven-Faces-Philanthropy-Cultivating/dp/0787960578