Tuesday, 30 March 2010

The 25th Hour

The 25th Hour is a brilliant nationwide campaign which aims to use the motivational power of the 2012 Olympic Games in London to inspire a surge in volunteers to help communities around the UK.

The idea is to tap into existing enthusiasm around 2012, to inspire people to find a little extra time in their day to give to their local communities. A recent DCMS survey found that a massive 48% of young people would volunteer their time for a 'London 2012 inspired activity'. You have to be suspicious that they're all imagining themselves hosting the green room for the Opening Ceremony - but even so, the will is there.

Wisely, The 25th Hour pairs emotional incentives with tangible rewards for outstanding contributions of time. The star prize being a give away of 2,012 pairs of tickets (not all to one person you understand) for the dress rehearsal of the opening ceremony. A genuine once in a lifetime opportunity and arguably even more exciting than the opening itself...

I think this is a really lovely idea and immediately engaging in it's accessibility. The concept that just one hour could make a difference is immediately appealing to anyone with the tiniest desire to 'give something back'.

It also makes me wonder, are there lessons here for employers hoping to engage their employees enough to deserve their 'discretionary effort'? Their 9th Hour. I think so:

- An emotional call to action. There's a reason to do more.

- Inspiringly manageable. An overwhelming task can cause apathy.

- Tangible rewards. Appreciation will be shown for a genuinely amazing contribution.

Therein (I hope) lies the key to success for The 25th Hour and the unexpected legacy of London 2012. Visit http://the25thhour.org/ to give your 25th Hour.

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