When I want to accomplish something, I make a checklist. The list looks like this:
1. The thing I need to do.
2. Steps to accomplish the thing.
3. End goal of said thing.
And that’s how it usually goes.
However, there are some things I’ve struggled to achieve so routinely.
Moving to a foreign country, waiting for my hair to grow out, a tumultuous breakup, and possibly the most nuanced: navigating long-term goals.
The phrase ‘achieving social impact,’ wasn’t necessarily part of my vocabulary before FreshSight. What I did know was that the desire to help those less fortunate was daunting, vague, and came with no instructions. There is no blueprint guide on how to care. The stream of extracurriculars offered to you at university can make the road to effective philanthropy even more confusing; many of us 18-23 year olds have a lot of ‘stuff’ we want to do, but are not quite sure how to do it.
What I have grown to appreciate about being part of FreshSight is the ability to pin down an abstract goal. While large organisations are becoming increasingly aware of their corporate responsibility, FreshSight, as a group, capitalizes upon this by pushing for conscious improvements in the third-sector. FreshSight provides a platform for its consultants to navigate their impact through honing in on their strengths. Throughout the 9 week programme, you’re given the opportunity to improve upon, and maybe even redefine, your own personal social impact.
While many of us can aim to individually give back in our own ways. my experience with FreshSight would not be as memorable without my team. The people I was able to work with taught me a variety of skills both professionally and personally: business writing, the wonders of excel, how to be effectively personable through writing (ha), and — what was probably most beneficial for my role as Training Manager — remembering to breathe a little when presenting.
What I especially appreciate about this experience is that for everything FreshSight has given me, I have been able to give back. Your impact is exactly what you make of it. If you wish to (as I did), you can even track your growth on a very neat, linear, Type-A-esque scale. You can see not only how you have improved as a professional, but also how you have directed your growth towards local and international social enterprises.
At the end of it all, you get a product. The product could be tangible: your final deliverable to your client, or your performance at a panel. Chances are, though, that your output will be intangible — as social impact tends to be. You’ll gain a community, a greater sense of responsibility, and a conversation topic to never shut up about. Your friends will definitely love it!!
Inevitably, FreshSight has encouraged me to create my own social impact checklist and made me comfortable that my end goal can and will change.
In the upcoming year, I am so excited to be part of the narrative that incoming consultants build for themselves and their own lists. Can’t wait to meet you all :^)