Why does a Big Four accounting firm like Deloitte do social impact consulting? Is this for CSR purposes? is this for publicity because being involved in impact is 'cool'? Are there business reasons behind this decision and if so, what were they? Do they charge clients for the consulting they do or is this pro bono? In this episode we hear from Tharani how she made a successful career change into social impact and built Deloitte's social impact consultancy from nothing.
I had a really great interview with Jon Feinman, who is the Executive Director and CEO of Innercity Weightlifting, a non-profit based in Boston. They own and operate a few gyms around the city and work with young people who have been identified as a high risk for violence. Their programs focus on social inclusion and reducing youth violence by working with these guys (mainly guys) in the gym. They connect these young people with new networks and opportunities, including meaningful career tracks in and beyond personal training. According to them, they use the gym to replace segregation and isolation with economic mobility and social inclusion, disrupting the system that leads to urban street violence.
This interview was recorded while Jon was in one of the gyms so you’ll probably hear a few weights and grunts in the background, don’t mind them, it’s all part of creating the atmosphere! I absolutely love the work that Jon and Innercity Weightlifting are doing. They are completely flipping the typical non-profit model on its head with the way that they are running their programs but not only are they changing the lives of the students they are working with, they are changing the lives of the clients who choose to train at the gym with the students. Jon mentions in this episode that most of the clients that come to the gym have never met someone who has been in jail before. Making this introduction and fostering a connection promotes social inclusion not just for the students, but for the clients too. Excited for you to listen to this episode!
As you may know, I spent a few months in the Philippines last year. And it was amazing. There’s a special place in my heart for that country and the incredible people there. During my time there, I met up with Mark Ruiz. Mark is one of the co-founders of Hapinoy - a social enterprise that work with women or nanays, who run small convenience stores, otherwise known as sari-sari stores in the Philippines. Sari-sari stores typically sell canned goods, rice, noodles, coffee, shampoo and toothpaste. Products are sold to locals from the neighbourhood in small packets or numbers, with very small profit margins. The stores are run informally, within the family and financial mismanagement is common. Hapinoy trains the women running these stores how to improve their business practices, get loans and earn more income
So, unless you’ve been living under a rock, it’s hard not to miss all the events, news, and general PR buzz about International Women’s Day that was recognised this month. Countries celebrate it in different ways. This year you would have heard about the Day Without Women in the US and many other western countries around the world such as Australia. It is an official holiday in a number of places including: Afghanistan, Armenia, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Cuba, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Laos, Mongolia, Montenegro, Russia, Uganda, Vietnam. Zambia and in China & Nepal for women only. Many brands such as Nike and P&G launch powerful ad campaigns, while companies around the world ranging from huge multinationals host an array of events, women’s breakfasts and conferences in recognition of the day.
If we move past all the marketing spin, is International Women’s Day still even important? Why do we still celebrate it? Is there an international men’s day? And, looking in to the future, what are the 6 things that we should be focussing on when it comes to gender equality.
I am super excited to introduce you to Christine. She is someone who I really admire because of her personal and professional accomplishments. You’ll hear me say it a few times in this episode, but I honestly don’t know how she has the time to do everything that she does. Having said that, I think when you’ve found that sweet spot in your life where you can use the skills that you’re good at while you work at something that you’re passionate about, the time you spend on work, doesn’t seem like work at all. Christine co-founded Women on a Mission - a social enterprise that combines travel, sport and adventure with her passion to end violence against women. Now I’m not talking about leisurely travel here, some of their recent missions have included one to Iran in November 2016 where they trekked 200km of dessert. They also recently went to Jordan for rock climbing, Siberia to live with the nomadic Nenets reindeer herders and even up to Everest Base Camp in 2012. These trips are not for the faint-hearted. We’ll chat about how they do these trips, prepare for them and how these trips contribute to the fight to end violence against women. Let’s get in to the show!
On the show today we have Sabeen Ali, founder and CEO of San Francisco-based Angelhack - the world’s largest and most diverse hacker community. AngelHack, a female-owned, female-majority company helps drive open innovation of tech products, platforms and brands with extraordinary smarts, scale and speed via tech education, marketing and hackathons. Prior to AngelHack, Sabeen founded (and then sold) her own leadership training and organizational development company, Team Building ROI. She has also consulted for companies like Yahoo!, and Cisco. Sabeen is someone who i very much personally admire. I especially love how she is working to bridge the gap between the tech world and the social world, which have up until quite recently been very seperate. Even today, the social world can be very slow to adapt new technology, much to the sectors disadvantage. Sabeen is also someone who is very much a role model for getting more women in to technology and is also a champion of making this happen quicker. Angelhack is actually one of the case studies that I use quite often when people tell me that it is too difficult to have more women at a tech event or in their organisation. Anyway, I think it’s best we get in to the show so that Sabeen can tell you more about her work!
I promise I've got a great episode for you today. I'm sure a lot of the listeners out there have heard about Salesforce and probably even use it. But I'm pretty sure your imagination would be quite limited in terms of the type of social impact initiatives that they work on that are in line with their business. Well today you're in for a treat. I interviewed Esther Nai, who heads up corporate responsibility and sustainability programmes across Asia for Salesforce about exactly that. I'm quite familiar with their work in creating social impact so I'm excited to share this with you too. We chat about their 1-1-1 model, some case studies on impact that they've created, how they measure impact and most interesting to me, how Salesforce aligns the social impact with their business model. Enjoy!
I am excited to introduce to you one of my very good friends and someone who I find extremely inspiring. In this episode, I interview Eli Johnston who does a lot of very interesting work bringing together corporations and entrepreneurs to accelerate social innovation. He does this through his work as the head of corporate innovation at the Impact Hub in Singapore which is a co-working space and community for social entrepreneurs. If that’s not enough, he is also the co-founder of Own Your Brilliance that brings students together from around the world and gives them to tools to get started on their journey to becoming social entrepreneurs. In this spare time, for the next 9 months Eli is also teaching a class of 10 women from all over South East Asia. They are house helpers also known as foreign domestic workers in Singapore. And he is going to be running a Venture Club through an organisation called Aidha which teaches financial literacy, business and entrepreneurship to these incredible hardworking women on their days off. Eli will be working with the women to build their business plans for a venture in their home countries and for the first time in Aidha’s history, these businesses will be designed as social enterprises. Honestly don’t know how he does this all! Anyway, I hope you enjoy this episode, it was definitely one of the more fun ones for me to record, especially as I find that Eli is someone who can be a lot of fun but also very deep in his thoughts and motivation to change the world. I’m keen to hear what your thoughts are after you’ve had a listen!
The silly season is in full swing! And although, I love this time of year because of the special time I get to spend at home with my family and friends, I can't quite wrap my head around the craziness in the shopping malls and supermarkets. Apart from being absolute chaos, are you noticing the consumerism and materialism? #guilty This is a quick episode about how you can do good over the Christmas season with 3 simple and EASY-PEASY tips to make this time of year truly the GIVING time of year.