Flowork - Social Capital Development Network

Using a snow blower to build social capital?

For those of you who live in colder climates and know what snow is, the last thing you look forward to is shoveling your driveway. It's just not fun. They say that more and more people are dieing of snow shoveling related heart attacks than ever before. I guess the grind and physical endurance this activity takes is taxing on people.

I was shoveling some snow, well, actually to be honest, snow blowing. Yes, I have a snow blower. Is it lazy, probably, but it does save a lot of time and energy. Any ways, I was doing my driveway and thought that I mine as well do my neighbors. I was clipping along and since I was using a snow blower it would take that more effort to do theirs. I didn't stop there. After I had completed the one neighbors, I decided to do the others as well. Again, it didn't take much effort, since I was using a snow blower.

After I was done, they both called to thank me. I told them that it was no big deal and they're welcome. Essentially, I had strengthened my relationship in one fowl swoop. I do not expect anything in return but I know that if I ever do require something, I'll have at the very least two neighbors who may be willing to help me. I think about the opportunities we have to help people and we don't for what ever reason. The act of helping others without them asking has to be one of the most powerful ways to build reciprocal Whe social capital.

Whether we're helping a neighbor, a colleague or a competitor, the opportunity to build our social capital is always an opportunity. Just because we know someone doesn't mean the will help us. We have to take the first step. Shoveling snow maybe one way of doing that.

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