Gurbaksh Singh Chahal: A Business is not Successful if the Community Does Not Benefit
Businesses today come into society with automatic expectations of success whenever they enter a new community. They except a willing labor force, new construction, and for larger companies, a sense of automatic prosperity. However, they are approaching business from the wrong direction.
Businesses succeed because they are supported by the town, which means the relationship between the new company and the community has to be symbiotic. The people have to want-or need-the business in the town as much as the company wants to be there.
One way that Gurbaksh Singh Chahal thinks companies should get involved in their towns is by giving back, either to the local community or to a greater cause. For example, three years ago this week, Gurbaksh Singh Chahal founded the Chahal Foundation, an organization that works to provide mentorship to keep kids in school and also works to eradicate sex trafficking-one of the most devastating situations in Gurbaksh’s home country of India.
The mentorship and benefits the Chahal Foundation provides are given without the need for repayment, but instead the expectation that the recipients will pass on the lessons they have learned to other young people. That is the ultimate goal of the education element of the Chahal Foundation.
Why Gurbaksh Singh Chahal Pays It Forward
The goals of the Chahal Foundation say a lot about Gurbaksh Singh Chahal. As a high school dropout and one who entered the business world without a lot of community support, Gurbaksh did not have a lot of stability when he entered the business arena. While he was lucky with the chances he took, he could have benefitted from what he tries to provide today: scholarships, mentorship, and awareness.
Gurbaksh also cares very deeply about his home country of India. Currently, there are a number of social issues plaguing the younger generations that are preventing them from reaching their full potential. This includes a lack of food for students both at home and school, lack of basic school facilities, including private restrooms for young girls, and the lack of a quality education in general. Gurbaksh sees these three elements as dire causes and is trying to help the young people in India through his “Let’s make our kids smile” campaign, and hopes his efforts will be supported in order to keep the number of India’s child laborers and sex trafficking victims from increasing.
How Can Your Business Give Back?
The Chahal Foundation takes giving back to a big level, but that doesn’t mean your company has to follow along the same scale. You can start small by sponsoring a sports team, or participating in a community clean-up project. Whatever it is your company decides to do, get every employee involved, from the CEO on down. That shows commitment and devotion, and the more people that participate, the better impression you make on your community.
If you want to take the same approach as Gurbaksh Singh Chahal, look deep into your community. Talk to your local officials, and also to other residents such as your neighborhoods. Find out what issues are of most concern to them, and see how your company can help. In most cases, it’s not all about money. It’s about time and commitment.
The Chahal Foundation was lucky enough to be started by a man who had the resources to fund large projects and think big. You too, can start thinking big. It is a matter of ingenuity and creativity. When you find a problem that you can focus on and work on solving little by little, there is nothing that can stop you from taking on larger projects further down the road.
As the third anniversary of the Chahal Foundation approaches, use the mission of Gurbaksh Singh Chahal to inspire you to bring change to your community, and in turn, the world.