These are difficult and challenging times. Our hearts go out to all those who have been hurt by injustice and inequality, today and in the past.
This is a time to look closely at who we are as an organization. Who we are as an 8z family.
It is a time to reaffirm the values that are at the very core of 8z, to build on them, and to use our values as guideposts to show us where to go from here.
So who are we?
As a company, 8z is a "big tent" that welcomes and embraces 8zers of differing races, ethnicities, genders, sexual orientations, religions and political views.
One of our core values is RESPECT. We strive to be respectful of everyone: other 8zers, our clients, other real estate professionals, and members of the public.
The flip side of the respect coin is that we ABSOLUTELY DO NOT tolerate anyone who is not respectful of others. At this moment, it is imperative that we reaffirm that commitment.
Put simply, racism has no home at 8z.
And because we stand for respecting all individuals, we reject and stand firmly against any approach that meets violence and victimization with more violence. We must find a way for times like these to bring us together, not allow hate and violence to further separate us.
What do we stand for as a company?
As community builders, we know firsthand communities are fragile. We must help protect and honor the communities that people have worked so hard to build.
We believe strongly that real estate and home ownership are powerful engines to build community. Home ownership unleashes upward social mobility for those starting on the lowest socio-economic rungs of the ladder. As real estate professionals, we know that home ownership is a game changer. For 8zers, this is a big part of why we do what we do.
In our efforts to build community, we support local charities through the 8z Community Seeds program. As a unified force, we support organizations like Greenhouse Scholars and Salute Colorado that are catalysts of social mobility and community building.
But at an inflection point like we find ourselves in today, is that enough?
Being HELPFUL is another 8z Core Value. What more can we do to help? Over the past few days, that's the question I've been asking myself and discussing with Ryan Carter and the rest of the 8z company.
I feel a sense of urgency to lean harder into the work we're already doing. To move beyond vacuous, simplistic corporate statements. To demand more of myself. To take action. To work toward change in concrete and meaningful ways.