Thursday, 3 July 2014

Why I shifted from Nonprofit Sector into Corporate domain?

I am science student with a Ph.D. on moths. I worked for an environmental NGO for 21 years where I spent half of my life just talking about wildlife and environment. Yet I took a plunge into the corporate domain leaving behind the legacy of nonprofit sector and starting my own company today.However this change did not happen overnight, it was building up gradually for past two years.
I am sure the new Company Act has changed businesses but this Act changed the direction of my career. Thanks to my training in Boston University in 2009-10 where I took management courses that helped me change my nonprofit vocabulary. Thereafter winning the U.S. State Department's Alumni Engagement Innovation Fund in 2012, was major path breaking experience for me where I was able to train more than 150 nonprofit professionals from close to 100 nonprofits pan India. This experience had already taken me away from the wildlife arena and made me experience the world of business management. This is when I realized I am not surrounded by people who understand the business world, so I started looking for professional inputs from corporate forums, seminars and exhibitions. I started reading Economic Times and forced myself the read up about the industry. I prescribed to various e-newsletters of several portals. This was like a self-made course on understanding corporate world.
As I was picking up the CSR news, I learnt about the dearth of CSR professionals. I also learnt that the skillset required by CSR professionals was similar to that of nonprofit professionals. I met few CSR managers and learnt, they were largely hailing from corporate world and didn't have experience of the social sector. I realized that as a nonprofit professional I had to struggle to get funds and while CSR manager has a privilege of giving funds to nonprofits. This is where, I thought I should reverse my role so that I could create a larger good for society by supporting right kind of projects and nonprofits. I started looking out for jobs in CSR domain. That's when one CSR manager friend advised me to start my own consultancy company. All this happened when things weren't great at my workplace and my views on CSR were not accepted. Also by now I was equipped with all necessary information about the corporate and nonprofit operations, I decided to put in my papers and start my own journey of helping nonprofits and corporate using the vehicle of CSR.
In order to address the CSR challenge which is diverse, I have roped in women experts who will be contributing to my vision in providing turnkey solutions for corporate and nonprofits. This amalgamation of social and corporate knowledge at my company is sure to drive results.

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