With everything going on in the last year, hell, even the last couple days, it makes someone wonder what is going to happen with just life moving forward on this planet.
I don’t know about you, but I feel like with everything going on, it could be worse. I know it could be worse. I’m lucky. Very lucky. I have a job and energy and access to clean food and water. The tech industry is growing bigger even during COVID and it’s not poised to slow down anytime soon. I live comfortably and my problems are minor compared to what a lot of people in the world face. I believe a lot of people who are in the tech industry can agree with my sentiment and find themselves close to the same standard of living and lifestyle. As society becomes more interconnected, we in tech will find ourselves on the forefront of new things being spearheaded.
Which brings me to the blog topic. What can we do as techies to change the world? I think a lot. If you look around you, we’re doing it already. I believe wholeheartedly in spearheading a culture of philanthropy among those in this field because I think we can do the most good.
Per demographic, the tech field is the highest paying field per amount of people employed in the industry. It’s the same sentiment with STEM majors making more out of college. Please fact check me if I’m wrong. It’s also why you see some of the richest people in the world are also nerds (Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, Mark Zuckerburg, Bill Gates).
Because of this, we have the largest pool of people that can give back to the community.
Now, I also do not advocate forcing my belief down your throats. You worked for your money? You can do what you want with it. Everyone’s situation is also different. Some may still be paying off loans, have no disposable income, etc. Everyone is unique. But I’m approaching this from the logical perspective and taking the statistic of a median pool, and assuming across averages, the mean net worth for those in tech baselines higher. This post is to just explore the idea and have you think on what would happen if there was a shift of culture to be more open in promoting philanthropic actions across the tech community. I personally believe altruism is the best thing in life. But only you can come to that conclusion through your own journey.
What would happen if we spent less on new gadgets and more on investing in the next generation? Helping those in need? Being the good Samaritan when times call for it? Even if someone just donates 1%, 2%, 5%…when collected together it makes a difference.
Again, remember that I am focusing solely on the tech field because of the stats, and not because I also think we’re the coolest people already ;).
I think if there was a culture in tech that celebrated philanthropy as much as Wall Street celebrates extravagant flexing, there would be a huge increase in the quality of life for those close to hubs of technology. For both the giver and the receiver. If you’ve ever done something nice, it just feels right. The reward is just being a good person, put simply enough.
The next question is how do we create a culture of philanthropy within tech? Truthfully, I don’t know. But I think we are closer than we think with what has been done so far.
I think it starts with the individual and establishing that mindset. Things ripple outwards from there to influence others, or at least have them think. Having buy in from those in leadership to support you for giving back instead of punishing you also helps. I also think representation does wonders too. The more people see that, statistically, techies are the ones that give back the most, reinforces that culture and promotes that image. It’s similar to the perspective that people perceive Wall Street guys because you always see a lot of bankers on the news getting into shady stuff.
That’s what I believe could help the world, even if it is a culture change that happens slowly over time.
Let me know what if you agree or disagree in the comments below. Would love to hear your thoughts.