The True Spirit of Generosity

My first consulting job was over 30 years ago with a group operator/franchisee of Arby’s/Taco Bell in New Mexico. When my client shared what he wanted from the assessment and group sessions, he instructed me to steer away from any money questions. I told him that the question was important to ask on the assessment, and that we’d steer away from the conversation – leaving it to him to address. To his shock, money came in sixth of 13 items on their list – this from people working at or near the minimum wage. 

 Much more important to them were things like better training, equipment that works, hiring people who care about their jobs, and managers being kinder to them.  

 So many managers and owners think that money is what motivates their employees and colleagues. All the research says money is important, but it is only at the top of the list of issues or motivators when people feel truly underpaid. What really matters most is working with people who care – about them, about the place they work, and about the business that they do. People want to work on something that has a purpose, with people and for managers whom they like. 

 True generosity starts by being aware of and caring about what others think and feel when they work with and/or for you and your company. Manage the environment and the communication to convey that you care. Make sure that is a big part of your culture. Watch how people relate and communicate, and do all that you can to make it better. That is truly generous.

 Teaching people how to do their jobs and live their lives better – providing training in job and life skills – at every level of development, is truly generous. Those skills and trainings shift with age, education, and socio-economic realities, and they are part of a truly growthful and generous culture.

 Lastly – but perhaps first – be generous of heart. Be kind. And so much of that is in the way we relate and communicate. Take the time to listen, and be sure you are truly focused on what is being conveyed. It is a learnable skill. Not just the words, but the eyes, the body language, even the breath conveys meaning. Be aware of your communication, and pay attention to “theirs.” Put down the smartphone, turn away from the screens, and truly be generous with who you are – and for whom they are. That is the key to true generosity in the workplace – and at home. ?

Steve Garber is director of Third Level Ltd. Contact him at 561.752.5505 or email him at sgarber@thirdlevel.com.

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Drew Limsky

Drew Limsky



Drew Limsky joined Lifestyle Media Group in August 2020 as Editor-in-Chief of South Florida Business & Wealth. His first issue of SFBW, October 2020, heralded a reimagined structure, with new content categories and a slew of fresh visual themes. “As sort of a cross between Forbes and Robb Report, with a dash of GQ and Vogue,” Limsky says, “SFBW reflects South Florida’s increasingly sophisticated and dynamic business and cultural landscape.”

Limsky, an avid traveler, swimmer and film buff who holds a law degree and Ph.D. from New York University, likes to say, “I’m a doctor, but I can’t operate—except on your brand.” He wrote his dissertation on the nonfiction work of Joan Didion. Prior to that, Limsky received his B.A. in English, summa cum laude, from Emory University and earned his M.A. in literature at American University in connection with a Masters Scholar Award fellowship.

Limsky came to SFBW at the apex of a storied career in journalism and publishing that includes six previous lead editorial roles, including for some of the world’s best-known brands. He served as global editor-in-chief of Lexus magazine, founding editor-in-chief of custom lifestyle magazines for Cadillac and Holland America Line, and was the founding editor-in-chief of Modern Luxury Interiors South Florida. He also was the executive editor for B2B magazines for Acura and Honda Financial Services, and he served as travel editor for Conde Nast. Magazines under Limsky’s editorship have garnered more than 75 industry awards.

He has also written for many of the country’s top newspapers and magazines, including The New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Miami Herald, Boston Globe, USA Today, Worth, Robb Report, Afar, Time Out New York, National Geographic Traveler, Men’s Journal, Ritz-Carlton, Elite Traveler, Florida Design, Metropolis and Architectural Digest Mexico. His other clients have included Four Seasons, Acqualina Resort & Residences, Yahoo!, American Airlines, Wynn, Douglas Elliman and Corcoran. As an adjunct assistant professor, Limsky has taught journalism, film and creative writing at the City University of New York, Pace University, American University and other colleges.