Why I chose social enterprise over the corporate world [as featured in the Guardian]

Published by The Guardian Social Enterprise Network.

Thursday 6 February 2014 07.00 GMT

Sanum Jain Guardian Social Enterprise Career Guardian Social Enterprise NetworkBy this time last year, some of my peers at the University of Manchester had secured jobs at reputable corporations while others had launched their first business or started making travel plans. I was somewhere in the middle, like many students in third year – stuck in a limbo of tedious application forms and not knowing what would become of me after graduation.

So I decided to assess my skills, pinpoint a particular path and find opportunities. I found that I loved writing and social media. I selected PR as a possible route, and came across a GiveMeTap internship. Little did I know that what I had first approached as work experience to prepare me for a PR office job would become a love affair with social enterprise. I now co-run GiveMeTap, heading all communications, PR and marketing at the grand age of 21.

So why did I decide to stay and work for a small social enterprise instead of applying to large-scale organisations, especially when I’m not an entrepreneur? Mainly, it is the sheer fulfilment and job satisfaction that I feel every single day. Some people get this satisfaction through making money and others through their creative expression. For me, knowing that my work is helping people across the world is enough to make me excited to wake up in the morning.

Secondly, by being part of a small team, your role is constantly morphing and every day is different. One day you may be designing a website and the next day you may be talking to journalists. There is no paper pushing, no ‘cogs in the wheel’ and everything you do is integral to the business. Subsequently, you can grow your talents and develop skills you didn’t think possible. For example, I’ve started to learn code, I’ve engaged in sales activity, and I’ve been involved with supply chain operations.

Many graduates leave university seeking stable, long-term employment from a reputable company instead of taking chances on their true passions. However, that security is not guaranteed; the CIPD have observed that turnover rates for young people (especially those caused by redundancy) are significantly high and increasing due to the economic climate. If risk is already an increased factor in the conventional job market, isn’t that further reason for graduates to take their own risks? This includes joining small business, starting out on their own, and being part of socially conscious ventures.

During my journey, however, I have also learned that even if you choose a route that diverges from that of the corporate world, your paths are sure to cross at some point. Instead of working for a large company, you may find yourself working with them, just as GiveMeTap has many corporate clients who involve us in their supply chain. By engaging with these businesses, there is potential to involve them as a vehicle towards success, while helping them to achieve their own social or environmental goals.

Although the perks and prospects of the corporate lifestyle are undisputed, working for a social enterprise opens the possibility of fulfilling opportunity that many don’t know exists. I believe Generation Y can be the driving force towards a future where sustainability and ethics are at the core of every business. Muster the courage, get into gear, and enjoy the journey!

The Snowflake Generation.

As a member of the ‘Snowflake Generation’, I must unfortunately but amusingly agree with almost everything said in this post! Brilliantly written! So many people I know have grown up like this and I have to laugh, because, I guess that I have some of these ‘flakey’ traits too.

Humour aside, in our defence, we have been brought up in a similar dog eat dog world as previous generations except with different rules, digital weapons and a huge lack of real role models. We have been indoctrinated into using every opportunity to “Brand Ourselves” but a lot of us don’t really understand what that really means. I’m so thankful that I have watchful parents that have kept my feet on the ground!

 

Over and Out.

The Siren's Tale

Born into the Millennial generation, I can’t say I truly fit all the traits falling beneath this generational code. Generational traits are often spread through a blanketed approach for anyone falling beneath the allotted birth years. But what happens when generations are decades stretched apart, especially in modern times when life itself changes by the year, nevermind the attitudes and attributes of generations?

You’re categorized with people who share no common traits, attributes, morals, or ethics.

The differences between 1980’s Millennials and 1990’s / 2000’s Millennials are unnerving. Through working with teenagers and having unfortunate forced societal interactions with younger Millennials, the one word that comes to mind at the end of the interaction: horrified. Horrified for how children are being raised, and horrified for our country’s future.

Instead of accepting this conglomerate of Millennials, I prefer to view the Millennial generation as cutting off at 1989. For children…

View original post 521 more words