Driven also mentors students at six Central Ohio schools, and recently launched a leadership program for student athletes at Charles F. Brush High School in Lyndhurst, Ohio, where Hall played.
Driven’s outreach personnel lead smaller programs, such as throwing birthday parties for inner city kids.
Hall likes the term “outreach.”
“Volunteering comes when it’s convenient. I have a day off of work. I have a week’s worth of paid vacation. It’s comfortable. It’s easy. It’s ‘hey, I’ve got to fill in some time, I’ll come down and I’ll volunteer.’ I love people who will sacrifice and be inconvenienced, where they have to give up something. That way, they’ll take ownership,” he says.
Driven works with more than 600 volunteers annually, but Hall wants to find more outreach personnel to join the 30 people who currently fill that role.
It’s also challenging to put people in the right positions. Not only do they have different personalities and availability, it has to be a good fit. People who work with numbers all day might want to do something else.
“We make the assumption that if somebody has a skill set, that’s what they should be doing with a nonprofit,” Hall says.
Hall has asked questions, observed and figured out how to get the most out of people. He’s not the life of a party, unless he has a microphone. He and Smith are motivational speakers, which is also a fundraiser for Driven.
“Somebody told me that we only use 10 percent of our brains, and I also think that we only use 10 percent of our strength to serve others,” he says.
People flock together after tragedies like Hurricane Harvey or Las Vegas, but people in the suburbs and inner city go through personal hurricanes every day, Hall says. So, he uses his passion, work ethic and experience to push people to do more.
He used to be timid, especially when asking for money. His mindset about nonprofits has changed — it’s about who wants to align with the mission. Hall has a tattoo with a Driven “D” and block “O” because he wants action.
“We talk too much. We meet too much. We strategize too much. We research too much. And nobody is doing anything. The organizations that do things have to fight, scratch, convince, connect, cry and beg to get people to help them and serve. It doesn’t make any sense,” Hall says.
Hall and Smith have big dreams for Driven. They want to open a $25 million facility, which would include businesses.
“It’s not just that we’re mentoring kids in the sixth grade, the eighth grade or when they’re a junior in high school. Now, when they graduate, they’re the prime picking for us to hire because they’ve been in our system with us for six or seven years,” Hall says. “We know their character. We can go out and hire these young men and women and get them in position to better their lives.”