This month, Talkdesk is focusing on how to make a difference in our communities. We shared how Talkdesk employees volunteer, and now, we want to spotlight how one of our amazing customers gives back. Bombas is a sock company that donates a pair of socks to someone in need for every pair they sell. But these aren’t just any socks! Bombas’ innovative socks are made with the softest long staple yarns in the world and have antimicrobial, moisture-wicking properties thanks to high-quality natural fibers.
“Bombas” is derived from the word “bumblebee” in Latin. Bombas was inspired by how bumblebees, though small, work together to make a big impact, and adopted the mantra “bee better”. As you’ll soon learn, they’re certainly doing that with their business model, mantra and community outreach. We spoke with Drew Stadler, Vice President of Customer Happiness at Bombas, who told us about Bombas’ amazing community initiatives and how everyone at Bombas strives to “bee better”.
“I am the Vice President of Customer Happiness at Bombas. I oversee all aspects of customer support and lead a team of over 60 Customer Happiness Associates to deliver the best experience possible to our customers, with the goal of leaving everyone who interacts with our brand 100% happy.
As a community-minded person, I was naturally drawn in by our mission. The company was initially started after our founders learned that socks are the #1 most requested clothing item at homeless shelters. So for every pair of socks we sell, we donate a pair to those in need, at risk or experiencing homelessness. Joining in the fall of 2014, I was the third full-time hire, and what really impressed me was the founding team’s equal commitment to our mission and to our customers. They weren’t marketers trying to capitalize on a fad, they were people who decided to work on a solution for an issue that is often overlooked and bring dignity and compassion to those in need. They live it—and have instilled those values within the company. To this day, every employee at the company regularly volunteers and donates our product first hand.”
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“Simply put, “Bee Better” means that we’re always asking ourselves what we can do to be better members of the community, to our customers, coworkers and employees. It’s a way to remind ourselves that working toward our mission requires equal parts humility and hard work.
We have a Giving Team who has done an amazing job donating over 16 million pairs of socks to date, but further, one of the many positive outcomes of committing so fully to our give-back model is that every employee—no matter what they’re working on—can draw a strong line to our mission. Take our Customer Happiness Team, for example. If we stay on the phone just a little bit longer to explain something to a customer, as opposed to rushing them off to get to the next call, that customer will ultimately be happier and buy more socks, meaning we can donate more socks.
But Bee Better extends past our mission. For our Customer Happiness Team, it’s also how we think about our interactions with our customers. We challenge ourselves to go above and beyond to ensure they are not only happy but excited and passionate about the Bombas brand, product, mission and experience. It’s no coincidence that customers who reach out have a 2X lifetime value if they reach out to our Customer Happiness Team.”
“Our amazing Giving Team not only coordinates the distribution of millions of products per year to shelters and organizations in need, but they also organize monthly opportunities for employees to connect directly with the community we serve here in NYC. These opportunities run all throughout the month and involve everything from serving meals with one of our local shelter partners, to spending time with school kids as mentors in positive settings. While it’s not mandatory that everyone participates in these meaningful outings, every single employee chooses to. The spots fill up so quickly that everyone from our CEO on down jumps at the chance to sign up when the month’s opportunities are posted.”
“By far my most meaningful experience is when I got the chance to run the NYC Marathon in 2016 with one of our Giving Partners, Back of My Feet, an organization that combats homelessness through the power of running. They’re an incredible national organization and definitely worth looking up.
Over the years, I’ve learned a lot from both the homeless community in NYC and the hard-working folks who lend their support. One thing that stands out is choice. Forgetting to ask if someone would like support before giving it is often overlooked by people who may mean well. One can’t just force a pair of socks or a sandwich on someone you suspect may be in need. Doing so takes away the power of choice and feeling of dignity which risks further alienating someone who may already be feeling marginalized.”
“There are so many ways. I think the first step is recognizing that the company is, among many other things, part of a community. Not having worked at a giveback company my whole career, I know how easy it can be to come in, do my work then head home without noticing what’s going on around me. There are so many charity organizations that are committed to good works across the country that are scrambling for volunteers. Find out who they are and reach out!”
More about our mission can be found by going to https://bombas.com/pages/giving-back.
We’re honored to count Bombas as Talkdesk customers and are inspired by their incredible philanthropic efforts. We hope you’re feeling inspired to make your community better, too! Check out this blog post to learn how you can start a volunteering program for your company.