I’m really excited to be absolutely pounding through my second 101 in 1001 so far…after kicking it off less than two months ago, I’ve already checked off (or made plans to check off!) several items on the list. As many of those are professional at present, it’s an added bonus.
First, and most exciting, I’ve been invited to represent my employer on the 2017 Greater Twin Cities United Way Campaign Cabinet, checking off #52, “Get more involved in the United Way!” Joining just 40 other professionals in the Twin Cities area, the invitation is an absolute honor and will enable me to not only bring greater visibility to my employer’s campaign, but to shape and impact the campaigns of some of the Twin Cities’ biggest and most dynamic companies. The networking opportunities are killer, the mission is inspiring, and I can’t wait to be a part of the United Way’s next season.
Second, in February and March I checked off #41, “Plan an event for my board.” As I’ve mentioned in the past, I hold a position as a boardmember for the Saint Paul Public Schools’ finance curriculum, and it’s been a total adventure over the last year. I’ve learned so much about successful administration and partnering with the community – experiences I count myself very lucky to be having this early in my career. In February, we hosted 150+ high schoolers at my office for “Career Day,” with over 30 volunteers from my company running sessions on interview skills, resume reviews, and professional networking. The day was an absolute riot – I don’t think I stopped moving for the entire 6-hour event – and we got amazing feedback from students, volunteers and SPPS administrators on the day.
Then, in March, we welcomed 120+ sophomores to the office for “Branding Yourself Day,” a series of sessions on how to build a personal brand and ensure that these students have the skills and self-awareness to present themselves well. I ended up teaching several of the 45-minute sessions, covering everything from how to shake hands and dress properly to what makes brands successful in the millennial age. The day culminated with a 1.5-hour etiquette lunch taught by a professional etiquette coach…everything from how to eat to converse to generally succeed at a business luncheon. I had such a great time, and again, the feedback from the day was fantastic.
When days at the office get dull or I get dissatisfied with life, it’s always nice to know I have these relationships and experiences tucked in my back pocket. Serving the communities I live and work in, and representing my company positively in the Cities, doing what I love…does it get better? I’m incredibly grateful to the Greater Twin Cities United Way and to Saint Paul Public Schools for trusting me with these platforms, and can’t wait to continue growing in my civic and philanthropic engagement, whatever the next steps on that path may be!