Driving Ride-Along

By: Alison Dennis

This past month I had the opportunity to ride along with our Driving team, and see the ReBuilding Center from the vantage of a passenger’s seat.

The first stop was at a warehouse in North Portland to pick up a large furniture donation. The warehouse crew fork lifted pallets of boxes and we moved them onto the box truck. What struck me as we worked was how much life and camaraderie there was among our team, and that the people working in the warehouse seemed to light up in our driving team’s presence.

Take away: No matter who is on shift, it feels good in our store. I’ll never take that feeling for granted – the feeling of working somewhere where people lift each other up.

During the day I got to ride along with both Jon and Alberto. Jon talked to me like a taxi driver as we drove, and asked me some of the most thoughtful questions that I’ve been asked about my work and life in a long time – the kind of questions that struck a nerve and moved my thinking forward. There is both an ease and a diligence to the way Alberto drives, like a great dance partner who somehow manages to gracefully steer clear of other couples on the floor.

Take away: Leadership isn’t dependent on a job title, or having a desk job. Taking an active interest in our fellow people and listening fully is an act of leadership. Looking out for everyone around you is an act of leadership.

In the afternoon, we took both trucks to Northwest and collected some old doors, lumber and lighting fixtures from the basement of an apartment building. 3000 inspected each of the lights with care, and took time to show the owners (and me) some asbestos in one of the fixtures. His tone was polite and helpful, and we all left the exchange safer and smarter.

Take away: Our community work isn’t limited to special events and parades. All day, every day, our drivers are out and about, serving of ambassadors and inviting everyone to make a material difference together.

Thanks to Alberto, 3000, Jon and Josh for making me feel so welcome, putting me to work, and keeping me safe!

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