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Small Act of Goodness

The Small Act of Goodness website each morning sends an e-mail to subscribers, giving them a small, fun task to implement, which will make people smile

Photo of Anne Kjaer Riechert
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Do you like making people smile? Do you like surprising people? The Daily Act of Goodness each morning sends an e-mail to subscribers, giving them a small, fun task to implement. A task could be - "Today you should compliment the person who you think wears the coolest shoes", or "Today you should place a pressed flower in a library book" or "Today you should write a postcard to your best friend telling them why you think s/he is wonderful"

On the website, people could share their stories and images of what happened after they implemented their act of goodness. These acts could be the acts could feed the "A Goodness Ticker for Impact" concept. 

Large scale social change can happen in small steps... and as Desmond Tutu once said "When you give, you receive". 

This concept has already gone into prototyping, and we would love to hear your comments, ideas and to see you help us 'build this airplane, while flying it". 

Thanks to Arjan Tupan there is now Small Act Facebook group you can join at:

... you can also join in and share your ideas and pictures at:

What kind of social impact does this concept achieve?

It leads to daily personal action. And if you spend 5 minutes each day making other people smile... imagine the impact over a year!

What skills are required to take this concept forward?

A person who thinks up 365 ideas of goodness to implement .. and a web developer and a graphic designer

How do you envision this concept being supported financially?

It can be done pro-bono by a web developer and the OpenIDEO community can think up 365 Acts of Goodness

Virtual Team:

Thanks to the IDEO brainstormers who inspired me to build on their idea. Thanks to Meena for encouraging me to post the concept

Evaluation results

16 evaluations so far

1. Does this concept increase social impact?

Absolutely! This idea will drive social change - 62.5%

It’s a good start – some impact is likely to be achieved - 37.5%

No – increasing impact is not the main focus of this idea - 0%

2. Does this idea inspire *you* to take action?

Sure does – I’m itching to get started turning this idea into impact - 50%

Possibly – I’d need to know more to make a decision about how to get involved - 37.5%

No thanks – it’s an interesting idea, but it would be best taken forward by someone else - 12.5%

3. Does this concept help the OpenIDEO community connect and collaborate together?

Yes – it does a brilliant job of enhancing our community connections and might even reach out to external partners - 43.8%

Maybe – it may drive increased collaboration but the concept would need to be further developed first - 56.3%

No – it doesn’t help our community connect or collaborate better - 0%

4. How easy would it be to try prototyping or experimenting with this idea?

Easy – I could have an early prototype running in a few hours - 75%

There’s potential but it would take some planning and coordination to make it work - 25%

Not really easy – this idea would take considerable resources and planning to get it off the ground - 0%

5. Does this concept clearly outline how it will be funded?

Yes, this idea clearly explains funding sources - 62.5%

Sort of – we’d probably still need to think more about how this idea would get funded - 37.5%

No, this idea doesn’t really explain where funding for implementation would come from - 0%


Join the conversation:

Photo of Haiyan Zhang

What about small gifts as a small acts of kindness? For example, I'd love to do a gift circle, where we each get the name and address of somebody else in the circle and must buy them a small, surprising, delightful gift.

Photo of Charlotte Fliegner

That reminded me of this sort of gift circle, The Package Project (, a worldwide swap in which you send a package to another person (who you don't know), and receive one from someone else.

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