Service in a Place You Would Least Expect It: The Airport

Abby Haralson

When I was interviewing for this job, I remember hearing about Build Then Bless and it’s one of the things that drew me to Lemonade Stand. It’s awesome that someone would trust their employees enough to use this money every month on other people.

Airline employees take the brunt of everyone’s travel issues. If the weather is bad, it’s the employee’s fault; if the flight is delayed, it’s the employee’s fault; if luggage is lost, it’s the employee’s fault (well, it was someone’s fault but probably not the poor employee that’s getting yelled at).

Shannon Frakes, a Lemonade Stand team member, decided to use the $50 she gets each month to help people around her on airline employees during an especially stressful travel time. Here’s the story and why it matters:

“I was traveling to Utah to go skiing and everyone’s flights were getting canceled. The weather was bad; people were really stressed about missing their flights. A few months earlier, I had seen someone buy a bunch of Starbucks drinks for airline employees and just set them on the check-in desk so I decided to head over to Starbucks and buy five $10 gift cards.

I remember I was so nervous to hand them out because people don’t normally do stuff like that but I gave one to the baggage claim person, the employee at our gate, and a few other Southwest employees I saw.

One of them told me that they couldn’t take gift cards so I explained that my work does something called “Build Then Bless,” where each employee gets $50 a month to spend on other people in need. I encouraged him to take it and just pass it on to someone else.

Using Build Then Bless makes me feel good. I think about things I wouldn’t normally think about prior to working here. When I was interviewing for this job, I remember hearing about Build Then Bless and it’s one of the things that drew me to Lemonade Stand. It’s awesome that someone would trust their employees enough to use this money every month on other people.”

During a time when most people are thinking about themselves—”Will I get to my gate on time? Will my flight be delayed? Why can’t those employees hurry up with the check in?”—Shannon used Build Then Bless to make an impact on five other people who needed support.

Shannon shared this story with the whole Lemonade Stand team just a few weeks after she started at the company and it helped people get to know her much more than a few get-to-know questions would have. Build Then Bless is designed to improve communities one meaningful interaction at a time. See how it could work at your organization by signing up today!

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