How a Surprising Accounting Firm Got a Real Surprise at Christmas

Business Stories Dec 19, 2023

Connection is why we’re here. It’s what gives meaning and purpose to our lives.

- Brené Brown

In Northern New South Wales, Australia, is the town of Ballina – with a population of just 47,621.

And in this tiny town – which ChatGPT says has “a healthy presence of accounting firms”, there’s one that really stands out. It’s Collins Hume.

We’ve been privileged to have them on board as a B1G1 Member and a Business for Good since 2011. In that time, they’ve created almost 14 million impacts around the world - as well as doing some great things locally too.

But even Collins Hume gets what their owner Peter Fowler describes as ‘slack.’ Specifically, Peter noted that: “We simply weren’t using some of the new B1G1 processes and tools.”

What happened this Christmas has, we suspect, fundamentally changed that.

Historically, the firm had done the normal ‘thing’ at Christmas, sourcing special cards and special gift boxes for their clients. But Peter had what he described as ‘a just-in-time moment’ when he really looked at the potential of B1G1’s new Enhanced Engagement Tool.

In less than 10 minutes created what you see here below:

Collins Hume's Engagement Tool

We think it’s very cool. And as Peter put it, “We have never seen a response like this from our Christmas activities.”

Here are just two of the many responses Collins Hume received:

Oh, Thank you all, that is a very unique and meaningful Xmas gift! FYI  - I chose to provide 150 Days of education in the world as our impact.
What a wonderful and generous idea. You definitely align with my values with this.

We especially love this one:

Full marks team CH. Great initiative.
My choice was 1,500 days of water (precious commodity).
Sure beats my thoughtful Xmas 1.5L of green ginger wine 😊

Peter’s response to all that feedback wasn’t to simply think: ‘job done.’ He says: “We were so taken by surprise that we immediately created another Engagement tool with smaller value impacts and sent it to all of our clients, not just the ones for whom we do most work.”

At B1G1, we believe this is such a great example of what we’re all here to do. And that’s – most simply - to connect.

We’d add just one more word to Brené Brown’s quote:

Connection is why we’re here. It’s what gives meaning, purpose, and joy to our lives.

Come to think of it, reading this short note might have brought some joy, some meaning and some connection to you too.

We do hope so.

It’s a great feeling to have as we head into ‘24.

Paul Dunn

Paul is the chairman and biggest supporter of B1G1. A 4-times TEDx speaker, he frequently travels around the world inspiring businesses with B1G1 and his amazing business insights.

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