Missions and Marketplace Podcast
Interview with Isa Watson
Hello Everyone! I’m Priest Willis and this is Missions and Marketplace podcast episode number 31. I’m joined today by Isa Watson. Isa is founder and CEO of Envested with an E, a social network giving platform created so that you can do your part to transform your community. It’s all about local giving. Isa started her career as a chemist for the metabolic diseases group at Pfizer before pivoting over to the world of business. After getting her MBA, Isa worked as a VP of Strategy and Business Development at JP Morgan Chase and then created Envested in 2015 to merge her business experience with her charitable side.
The thing that I love about Isa in the business that she’s created here in this app that she’s created is that she epitomizes what we do here at Missions and Marketplace. She has found a position to give back to the community as well as also creating something that she can monetize. So, go check it out – envested.org with an E, E-N-V-E-S-T-E-D. Without further ado, here is Isa Watson.
Welcome to Missions and Marketplace podcast. Join us as we talk to business and thought leaders to discuss their passion in and outside of business and how it drives them to give and be citizens of goodwill. Let’s get started.
PW: Hi Isa, welcome to the program.
IW: Thank you. Thanks for having me.
PW: Thanks for joining us. So, why don’t you tell the audience a little bit about yourself.
IW: I am a North Carolina native. I grew up here, scientist by training. I spent some time working both in Pharma, I was first a diabetes chemist for Pfizer and a data scientist for the drug Lyrica, and then I transitioned to the world of financial services via my MBA at MIT where I was Vice President of Strategy and Business Development at JP Morgan Chase. So, I spent my last few years at JP Morgan at a number of capacities, both in New York and Hong Kong. I felt like I gained a lot of great skillsets, a lot of great professional experience. I reached a point where I was really excited to leverage my more community-oriented and family-oriented background. I came from a family that has just given a lot to the community over the course of my life. And so, last year, I left JP Morgan and combined those things – from a professional skillset and a personal passion. So, I create Envested. We have to say it with an E – E-N-V-E-S-T-E-D. And what we are is a social network giving platform that facilitates local community engagement and we created a marketplace specifically for local giving – something like 1% of non-profits according to the Urban Institute getting about 87% of all financial resources. So, a lot of local organizations are becoming increasingly under resourced and shriveling in some kind of digitizing their engagement and experience with donors. On the user side, we found that a lot of the…
PW: Why do you think they’re struggling with that? Is that because they’re non-profits so money is typically harder to scale and stuff like that? What do you think that’s struggle for them to do?
IW: I think it’s becoming increasingly difficult for them to raise money because of the type of donor. That is becoming a bigger part of the giving phase. So, when you think about our parents and the way that they give, they used to write cheques. I don’t think I’ve owned a checkbook in about ten years. Seriously, ten years. Someone asked me if I’ll write a cheque the other day and I didn’t have one.
IW: I was like, so you want me to order cheques, to write one? [Chuckles] And so when you think about creating a digital experience, an experience that’s particularly engaging on the digital side not just transactional, that’s the specific skillset that some non-profits haven’t quite secured internally within their four walls. And so, that’s where a solution like Envested comes in to help them digitize their experience.
PW: I was going to ask, how would you – this is probably a standard question that you typically get – but how do you go from a scientist to somebody that works in banking. You kind of brought it up that you saw a lot of your family do a lot of giving and stuff like that. What made you focus right to that? Did you see a bigger opportunity there? Did you just get tired of Wall Street and just the scientist side of things? Coz, you spent so much time in school and we’re going to talk about that for a second. But what made you just go completely outside of what you went to school for essentially to focus in some other stuff?
IW: You know that’s really interesting Priest. I had a very early love for science. My dad was a computer engineer and I spent quite a bit of my formative years just shadowing my dad and things that he did. I always have the story about how when I was 7 instead of buying me a computer, my dad would buy me the computer parts and make me build a computer. And my mom she always didn’t like it because my built computer didn’t come with a warranty but I guess it was for the sake of learning, right? Really, I kind of developed a love for creating things. And I think that I really wanted to create something with meaning. And my first way of doing that was by creating medicine. So, my specialty within chemistry was Inorganic Chemistry and Nanomedicine, building drug delivery systems. So, I think that going back to the science side and why I started or how I started there. I started there because I really have always been attracted to solving very complex problems. Complexity is something that I think some people run from. If its complex, I usually run to it some people call me crazy. And so, I would say that when I transitioned from science, I went to business school because as a scientist you are very focused on a specific niche; I was a published scientist, I was published in scientific journals, I won a lot of national competitions and awards over the course of many years starting from high school actually. I really said I really want to take this kind of this impact and magnify it. Being a scientist at a place like Pfizer, when you’re in discovery research, you’re probably 15 to 20 years from seeing what you do hit the market and impact consumers.
PW: That’s a good point.
IW: Right! I was going to be retired by then.
PW: Yeah. [Chuckles]
IW: [Chuckles] And it’s very unlikely that what you do actually hits them so I really wanted to be close to the impact and that was what drove my decision to go to business school. So, I wrapped up at MIT but when I was at MIT, one thing I noticed was a lot of different sectors recruiting me – all the way from health care, big financial services, consulting, technology companies. I eventually ended up at JP Morgan because I was in a very specific niche – general management training program that was sponsored by very senior management. It was an opportunity to take my very analytical and problem-solving skillset and apply it to some big, complex problems whether that was in things that affected a lot of people – whether that was in mortgage banking, whether that was getting retirement products in the US and in Hong Kong all the way to building the right strategies for small businesses to bank better and have easier banking relationships with Chase. These were very meaningful things I was actually able to do that affected millions of clients. So, the driver of this has always been “where can I attack a very complex problem and impact as many people as I can”. And I think the decision to leave JP Morgan was – It was a great experience. I learned a ton from my time there. I think this is a great company. But my decision to leave JP Morgan Chase is really fueled by the fact that I really wanted to take the skills that I had built and use those skills to drive very meaningful impact to our communities. And I felt that, call me cliché, but I really do believe that in life “to whom much is given much is required”. I felt it was my duty, something I really wanted to do. I’m really excited about it Priest. Envested has been doing really well. We’ve really impacted the community in some meaningful ways already and so that gives me fire every day. It gives me joy to see the impact that the solution that we have, that we built has on the community.
PW: That’s really good. When I first would look at your bio and read your story and listen to some other shows you’ve been on and things along those lines. It’s really interesting for one thing to look at your bio and say “how did she go from this place to here”? But as you begin talking about it, it makes total sense. It reminds of paint by number, sort of, where when you’re painting by the numbers for the most part it’s hard to tell when you’re too close to something what it could be until you start to step back and realize who you are and what’s developing. So, you being a scientist and doing something for the betterment of people and then ultimately ending up with this app that we’re going to get into and discuss a little bit that helps tons of people. Now it just makes sense – now that you kind of took a step back and made me take a step back and look at it. One of the things that I brought up was your education which I think is second to none frankly for what you’ve been, what you’ve had. I mean you’ve been at MIT, you’ve been in Cornell, you’ve been in Hampton U. Now that we’re thinking about what you’re doing with this app, again it’s not just an app, were going to get into how embedded its becoming with the community and what it’s doing for the community but what do you think about those — so let’s take being a scientist out of the equation and maybe other things like a doctor. What do you think about those people that think that they need a college degree to get into business for example? Do you think that’s a requirement? We’re talking sort of about the millennial generation. Do you think millennials need an education? Now again, not any education but a college education specifically. Again, I don’t want a doctor walking into the office and saying “I got this coz they just solved this on House last week”. But I want, if we put them aside, what do you think about just the person that says “you know want I want to create an app. I don’t want to go off to college”. How much has college given you that you say “you know what, I wouldn’t throw the baby away with the bathwater”?
IW: Priest that’s a really, really interesting question and if I ask my mom it might be like “of course you need college! Everyone has to go to college”. But the way that I look at it is that first, you need to establish credibility. And for a lot of people, for the majority of people, that can start with a college degree. And I think that the very intangible things that college can give you like discipline, structure, organizational skills and critical thinking especially if you choose one of the more technical fields to major in. And I think that credibility’s one thing that you need to get a business of the ground because inevitably you really need support. You need support whether that’s from investors. You need support to acquire customers. Your customers or your consumers will be that support. And they’re driven to something that seems credible. And then the second thing I would say is skills/experience. I’ve seen some people who may not have had the opportunity to go to college. However, what they did was they were able to gain meaningful experience through working at XYZ Company or ABC Company where they acquired these skills needed to start their business. And so, I really do believe that it helps from a credibility perspective but I think that skills and experience is also something that you need.
PW: We’ve gotten questions. We do Q&A here where we get questions. We do Twitter chats. You don’t even know what I was about to call it but we do Twitter chats and people always ask questions. Do we need a college degree for this? Do we need a college degree for that? Some things are just straightforward that you absolutely need a college degree. But when you start looking at people – Elon Musk, Steve Jobs – again these are the exceptions. And I don’t want to get the impression that I don’t believe in college. Both my kids are in college. One is at Texas A&M, plays football. The other one is going off to ECU next week. So, I’m all about education and college but I also don’t want people to feel limited if they don’t feel that that’s their path. Sometimes knowing who you aren’t helps you to know who you are. Some folks just don’t feel cut out for it and I think they still can be successful entrepreneurs. So, I really do vacillate with, if that’s always a key. Again, if you’re going to be a scientist, if you’re going to be something very vital in medicine and dealing with some of these other things there’s no question about it. But I also never heard it put like the way you put it or you said if you want credibility especially when you’re younger and you’re just walking into a situation. If you don’t have the experience per se you certainly want some kind of schooling or education to validate what you want to set out to do.
IW: Well one of the things that I’ll also add Priest is that unlike 50 years ago, so many colleges have actual learning opportunities. When I was at MIT, in just two years I was a consultant Bosch Auto out in China, Novartis in Massachusetts, Goldman Sachs in Washington DC and Zynga Games as well. I think college is it doesn’t necessarily have to be just classroom like it was maybe 50 years ago but there’s so much opportunity and college is now to experiment with things in kind of risk-free type of way. You can start a business while you’re in college and you can have something to fall back on if that doesn’t work. But I really think if you look at how to mitigate the risks, if you do it in that type of environment, you’re learning ten class at the same time, I think that’s a really prudent approach.
PW: Very, very well said. Let’s talk about Envested a little bit. Now it’s E-N-V-E-S-T-E-D not invested, so it’s not a platform where you can go and invest your money for index funds and expect a dividend and all that. Am I correct that it’s a play on words where you’re investing in your community by giving the causes – local causes and things along those lines?
IW: Yes. The way that we came with the name Envested was that we listened to a lot of millennials in particular talk about this notion of giving. They don’t like the term giving – I don’t want to just give. It insinuates that I just cut a cheque and turn my back and walk away. What I really want to do is be engaged because when I’m engaged I’m invested with an “I”. So, we combined those two, engaged investing to one, to just address the terminology that people wanted to use when talking about being active with their community.
PW: You know I watched this, I’m not sure if you saw this, it was a documentary and it was called Poverty Inc.
PW: And what it talked about was how people, even with companies like TOMS shoes, so what’s really exploding right now is social entrepreneurs. Even Affiliate Missions has a social aspect to it, right? But the way that I think you guys are doing it is amazing. It reminds me of another thing that a guy named Shaun King who gets probably more pressed than he wants right now for other reasons. He started something called HopeMob. And HopeMob is like a crowd funding thing where people have separate issues to platform what they have where they have to, you know have their car reported, they need money to get it back. So, everybody basically giving their money, see that that person gets that car back, boom they have it. That’s kind of one thing. But I think yours is a lot closer to home in terms of people that do local giving to rescues and charity and you can see the impact immediately versus as I was leaning to this Poverty Inc documentary that I watch where people give to Red Cross but there’s so much red tape within this giving that by the time that money is funneled out, the money that people actually need it receives it, they get literally pennies on the dollar if that. And even within that giving aspect, a lot of those people in other countries and we talk about Haiti and other areas, you’re actually hurting some of those business people and other people more than you’re helping them.
PW: Where this is literally giving them the heads up. Let’s talk about it. So, what’s the average amount typically give across the platform and what’s the demographic of the giver. So, can you get into some other data points about the business?
IW: Yes. So, the average giving on a basic donation is usually in between $17 and $20 average amount. And the demographic largely millennials – meaning 30, under 37. But the interesting thing about it Priest is that when we first built this product, we positioned it as a millennial product. We are this product; we are the solution of the future. But one of the things that we’ve realized is that this has resonated quite well with the Boomers and the Xers as well. Actually, we want it to be this all along, we just didn’t have the capability. [Laughs]
PW: Totally. I always find it funny when people say – not you guys, this isn’t about you – but when people say that millennials love to go on vacation as if Gen-Xers don’t, right?
PW: Or millennials love to do this, yeah we love working. I’m a Gen-X from ’41, my mind just sometimes explodes when I hear about like “and millennials they love to go back to their parents”. I would’ve loved that too if my dad would’ve let me come back, he didn’t. So, I missed that boat on that one.
PW: This makes sense that you guys would put something in place that wasn’t there and Gen-Xers, Baby-boomers and all of them would come to it coz there’s nothing that I know of that’s like it. So, that’s really cool. I’m going off on a tangent, I’m sorry. So, what were you saying about the demographic though?
IW: Yes, the demographic is mostly millennial but we do have some Xers and Boomers in there as well. The thing is most of our touch points with people if they engage on the platform had been through social media channels, have been through the non-profits themselves. And so, it’s been gaining a lot of traction, receiving very positive numbers week after week. And so, we’re very excited about the progress that the platform has made so far since we launched the product four months ago.
PW: I love the app, it’s very intuitive. I downloaded it this weekend to go through it myself. It’s absolutely intuitive. One of the things, I’m sure you guys are working on this, I love how you cover the different categories or segments of people within Education, Music, Arts, all these different things and have different challenges or causes within those.
PW: Are you guys planning ongoing or getting further embedded with these things? Meaning, the way I was thinking about it this weekend and this just may be silly, but are you guy planning on doing something like the Uber of volunteering? So, if people are in the community, they want to give their time, they’re just not sure how. They can go on Envested and in addition to giving their money, you know the Durham shelter also is looking for somebody to make meals for the weekend and that person’s like “yeah cool. I want to do something like that”. Are you guys gearing up to get involved in that piece too?
IW: That’s such an interesting question Priest because when we look at engagement, people generally are engaged in one of two ways. And a lot of times both ways they are engaged in giving and/or volunteering. So, we have to scope out the launch of the product. From a tech side, you have to control the scope closely enough so that your user knows who you are, what you’re doing and you can prove the basic functionalities of the app. That said, volunteering and the layering on the volunteering, in particular those opportunities locally has been something that we have discussed as end scope or future versions of the platform. We just have to figure out and finalize when the timing will be to add that capability. Yes, we want to be, ten years from now, twenty years from now, the platform that people think of when they think of local community engagement whether that’s giving, whether that’s volunteering and also story-telling and sharing various stories through the community. It’s so funny I’ve never heard of the term Uber for volunteering before.
PW: I literally just made that up now for you. You’re free to take it if you want, it’s yours.
IW: [Chuckles] The Uber for anything is pretty catchy these days, right?
PW: [Laughs] I guess so. So, I have stolen I didn’t think it all myself, I guess.
PW: So how do you monetize this app. It’s really cool, I totally get the premise of it. I think that you guys are absolutely on to something, you have something really cool here. But how do you monetize it? What do you do to get money in?
IW: Because we have a different revenue strategy. Pretty much all of our competitors in this space who charge the non-profits a fee based on transaction price. So, our competitors are largely charging a 5 – 10% of what the non-profits raised which when a local non-profit has a $500,000.00 operating budget a year, $50,000.00 is actually quite meaningful to them.
IW: So, what we believe at Envested is that we really, really want to help the non-profits retain their resources, the local organizations. Because they’re really driving impact in our communities. It’s our job to really help facilitate that. The way that we monetize actually is through partnerships with companies. In particular, a lot of organizations are struggling with – when you think about the two stakeholders of an organization, you have your employees and you have your customers. A lot of organizations that are really struggling with millennial engagement problem. It has set an all-time high. Millennial turnover is costing companies about $30 billion a year just in direct training and recruiting cost. And so, a lot of HR departments are now looking for more innovative ways to engage their employees. About 6 in 10 millennials are actually unengaged from their workforce or from their workplace. And so, what we did is we’re creating a corporate solution that we are launching where there’s an employee giving platform and employee-engagement platform that is deployed to enterprises. So, that’s the enterprise solution. And we’re able to do that at a nominal fee and make the numbers work. That is one of the main ways we’re monetizing and then we have a few…
PW: Are you almost white labelling your platform to use for other EPPs or employee form engagements? Is that it, right? So, like with Lenovo. I do a lot of business with Lenovo, they have a EPP where employees can go in, they can buy stuff, get discounts but they also can do some giving to the boys and girls club and all that other stuff. Are you guys craving some white label platform of Envested so that people can work through that through the companies? Is that what you’re saying? Or did I just blow that old thing up.
IW: You got part of it. So, the solution that we’re selling now is not white label, it’s just an Envested solution and the company has a corporate profile on the Envested platform, only their employees can join.
PW: That makes sense. So, this is a cliché question but I have to ask you. What does a typical day look like for you as you’re trying to scale the business and you’re building something that’s new, fresh, exciting? What are you doing from day to day and I know it probably changes every day? But just give me a typical day.
IW: Man, Priest, I wish I had a typical day.
IW: What I would tell is typical of every day is that I wake up at about 5:30 in the morning. I wake up at 5:30 every morning and tackle my e-mails. [Chuckles]
IW: I’ve had my team say to me “do you sleep”? And I’m like “Yeah. I promise I’m getting some hours”. But I wake up at about 5:30 every morning. One of the things about being an entrepreneur is that it’s very stressful on your body.
IW: Its very stressful mentally, physically, emotionally. So, one my priorities is taking care of myself and my body so I make sure I get up and I eat a good breakfast. I come in to usually work between anywhere from 7:00 to 8:30 and I alternate my day between blocks of working time and meetings. I try to schedule a whole dayful of meetings. Unfortunately, today was not one of those days, I wasn’t able to achieve that. Usually between, I’d catch up with my people and my team or meetings with key stakeholders in the community. Whether that’s companies. Whether that’s various community influencers, organizations out there. But I always block off transit time where I need to respond to things I actually need to work – I need to get out this, build a strategy, respond to e-mails, things of that nature. So, let’s say generally alternating. I have at some point been on the road more than others. So, there’s some travel embedded in that. I would say I usually leave between, let’s call it 6:00 and 7:30. I usually go see my trainer about 2-3 times a week. I’m in the piano studio once a week at my instructor’s studio and then I’m at home practicing the other days of the week. And then I’ll probably go to bed and try to go to bed around 11:00, sometimes that work sometimes that doesn’t. But I would say that is an average typical day for me.
PW: Wow! That’s pretty crazy. I’m trying to think what I do at 5:30 and I’m asleep. So, there’s just not too much to that. So, I think I saw a video with you out there where you were playing the piano. So, I definitely was going to ask about that. Was that one of your things that you did kind of as an outlet? But you were saying in addition to that you’re just trying to work out. This podcast, a lot of people that listen to it are entrepreneurs so definitely the idea of having anxiety and stress and some cases depression and all these other things that you can imagine entrepreneurs deal with coz you probably deal with some of these things. Maybe not all of them but some of them. That’s part of your outlet is exercise and what else do you do? What else do you get caught up into where you just try to let go? I know it’s hard to do because you’re building something. But what do you do to just get offline and just build yourself back up.
IW: One of those things is playing the piano. I’ve been playing the piano for about 25 years now and starting from a young age. When you start that young and have played this long, it ends up being one of your outlets. It ends up being that thing that allows you to disconnect from the world and just clear your mind. I’m working on some pieces right now. I’ve played mostly classical – Chopin, Mozart, Beethoven, Bach. I just started this Schubert piece Ave Maria which I really, really love but piano’s definitely my outlet. I have a room in my house where my piano, where I have my keyboard there, and I have a grand downstairs and then I also have a cello there that I play as well. I play a few instruments but piano is definitely the instrument that I’ve played the longest. It’s the instrument that I’m most connected to. I always say that one of the other things that I do is I have always been mentoring and giving back. It has always been part of my family history. My parents have always – I felt like growing up my house was a community house. [Chuckles] PW: [Chuckles]
IW: People would just come over because they needed help with their homework and not even call. And my parents are like “yeah sure. Come on in. We’ll help you or get one of the kids to help you”. And so just being so grounded in that type of environment, I just find it so fulfilling to give back via mentoring. So, I’ve done quite a bit of mentoring and I still do with people in high school, people in college, people in their early stages of their career. Because even though it doesn’t allow me to disconnect as much as how playing piano does, it’s something that makes me feel fulfilled. And to be quite honest with you Priest but like I said “to whom much is given much is required”.
IW: I feel that it’s my duty given where I’ve been, given the things that I have achieved and I’ve been so fortunate I’m very grateful every day, I think it’s my duty to give back to the community in ways that are awesome or high-tech like mentoring. So, I have a lot of those relationships that I maintain. And because I’ve lived on three continents, I have those relationships on three continents. I lived here in the US, previously I also lived in London and Hong Kong and so I have these relationships all over. I like to maintain those.
PW: That’s really impressive. That’s why I wanted to talk to you because you’re impressive as an entrepreneur. I really like the platform itself, Envested. But I think your story is amazing. I purposely didn’t touch on your file there but I’m sure a lot of that plays into the role of who you are today. It speaks volumes to you and where the business is going. You are absolutely blessed for sure. I think this generation is a little bit different in terms of how they want to leave a legacy and leave a mark even with their business. So, they want a conscious capitalism versus just trying to get everything for themselves. I always tell people “I’m okay with being a 700,000 heir versus a 1.2 million heir, right? You can give your employees a little bit more, give the surrounding people a little bit more and give people a hand-up. So, you are the absolute example of that You are the absolute example of why we do missions and marketplace podcast because you are in the marketplace but you also have a mission where you want to serve others and I’m blown away by you and your team and what you guys are building there. I 100% support, it’s really good. I mean to ask, are you guy doing anything offline with Envested? Meaning, so I know you have the app, I know how much you’re giving back and you guys essentially don’t even touch the money right? You have a backend, if you will, that sends that money right over to the challenge or the charity or the non-profit of choice.
PW: Do you guys do anything offline as a group or as a team with some of these charities and things of that nature even outside of yourself just as a company.
IW: This has come up as we develop, as we continue to develop our team. And one thing that I have been advised on that people say many entrepreneurs negate to consider is how you develop company culture. And what are the things that you want to embed and formalize in the culture and what exactly does that mean for your employees and what does that mean for your community as you start to tell and create your company story. And so, one of the things that we discussed as an Envested team, we have yet to formalize it, but it’s definitely in the near term, is having a half a day once a month where our team just goes and volunteers for one of our partner nonprofits. Volunteering can lead a few different ways but one of the things that we want to do is leverage our team’s skillset. So, we’ll do kitchen volunteering but we’ll also do maybe some marketing and communications work for you and give you some help on that or maybe some product work on your website. So, that’s one of the things that were looking to embed into our company culture but we haven’t quite formalized it yet but it’s definitely on the work.
PW: You’re right on track. And the reason why I asked that question was for that very reason coz a lot of times companies – I went on out to Las Vegas, I got a chance to talk to the CEO Tony and some other people at Zappos and one of the biggest things that they told me was that sometimes you want to do good for your community and you’re doing good in a sense but then it just becomes like work. The transactions are done, you’re building the app, you’re getting caught up in the data, you’re building this business but you forget about the actual people that you’re trying to serve and the atmosphere that you’re trying to create including your employees and other people. So, that’s why I ask. So, what do you do as a business offline to kind of make sure that you’re still sticking yourself right in the middle of things and remember why you do it to begin with essentially?
IW: And then on top of that Priest, there are a number of requests that people send our way. You know “hey Isa, can you do a session here and give us some advice” and to the extent that I can, I do engage in the community that way as well because people have found that its helpful and I do want to make sure that I am contributing in my time and being embedded in the community that I serve.
PW: so, Isa what can we look forward to next from you guys, from Envested? Is there anything else you’d like to share about the business in general?
IW: One of the things that we are moving toward is solidifying our market/city expansion plan. Right now, because we are a local marketplace, what that means is that if you’re based in Raleigh Durham and you’re Raleigh Durham member, self-selected, the non-profits you see and the community activity you see is all Raleigh Durham activity. But if you’re an Atlanta user, the non-profits activity is based on Atlanta.
PW: Got it.
IW: And so right now we are starting to strategize on our expansion because we’re going to be creating and expanding local marketplaces. So, I think that is something for people to look out for. And for people that want us to notify them when we do into their market, we have a contact form on our website so people can go into https://www.envested.org/contact.html and they can fill out their name and their e-mail and what city they’re in and we will notify them when we come to their city. And that’s something that we’ve seen a lot of activity from already e-mail those requests.
PW: People can submit their city? If they say “hey I’m on Rhode Island and I want – there’s some things here that I like to at least submit”. Can they do that with you as well?
IW: We have a drop down of pretty much every major city in the US so you can go and say “hey, I’m Bob Jones and I’m in Providence and this is my e-mail address. Please notify me when you come to Providence”. I think we have a place in there for Other so people can just select from the drop-down menu what city they’re in and then where that goes is into our backend without Communications Manager and when we make moves to open in that city, we’ll then reach out to those set of potential users who said they wanted to be notified.
PW: How could they reach you on Twitter? Are you on twitter, Facebook?
IW: Yeah on Facebook, we’re just the Envested web page. You just search Envested. People can find us on twitter. On Instagram, our hash tag is @AlwaysEnvested, again Envested with an E. So, those are the ways that they can engage with us on social media. If people want to reach out to us via e-mail, we have firstname.lastname@example.org email that people can use to reach us. And one of the things I’ll say lastly Priest is that one of the reasons I’m really excited about the work that we’re doing is also because I just feel like the millennials aren’t given enough credit for how generous they are. A lot of the rhetoric in the media or even from our grandparents, our more senior managers, is they say “oh you guys are so self-interested. You’re very selfish. You’re very…”. I’m sorry but we’re not. According to the Case Foundation, 87% of millennials gave to a charity or a case last year.
IW: That was the highest participating rate if any generation and it’s just so exciting to create and deploy this product that is going to capture that type of meaningful activity and facility there and quite frankly amplify it.
PW: How much of a delta is that with other generations of say like Gen-X for example? Is that 15% higher or 10% higher? Do you know the number to that one?
IW: I would say on average its 10-15% higher than
PW: … especially since to your point you do hear a lot about millennials and how uninterested they are about the world, goings-on however you want to click that. That’s a really good point. I really appreciate you being on the show. You’ve been awesome. You shared great information. I want you guys to check out the site Envested.org and that’s with an E. Isa, I appreciate you.
IW: Thank you Priest. Thank you for having me. This was fun.
PW: Thank you.
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