Using Purpose to Empower Change: LinkedIn Speaker Series with Jennifer Dulski

August 1, 2018

“Be the change you want to see in this world. Anyone can spark the change they desire.” Chances are you’ve heard this before, but maybe you’ve taken it with a grain of salt. That’s an understandable reaction, knowing that there are 7.5 billion people in the world. But, have you ever turned that thinking upside down to see the world as being made up of 7.5 billion change-makers, instead?

Our most recent #InSpeaker, Jennifer Dulski, Head of Groups at Facebook and former President of Change.org, has. In fact, as someone whose career has given her a front row seat at witnessing very ordinary people doing very extraordinary things, she knows intimately that anyone CAN spark change, no matter where, or how small they start.

To level-set, “anyone can spark change” may seem like an overzealous claim, but here are some relevant examples that can put this into context. Change can be as large as your nextdoor neighbor running for city council, winning, and reshaping a law. Change can also be as small as you deciding not to attend a working meeting, and influencing many colleagues to do the same.

In short, anyone can be a changemaker and Jennifer’s book, Purposeful, aims to persuade readers that they all have the power to start or participate in any movement that they find meaningful. In speaking to us, she impressed three key takeaways that she hoped would inspire us all:

We can ALL do something amazing. No matter our demographic, age, gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, nationality or otherwise, creating change is a power that we all possess.

Communities are the key to movements. Jennifer reminds us that like standing ovations, movements are started by people - even a single person at times. But, the key to the development of a movement is a community that will help to drive and push it forward. Be brave and courageous in supporting what you believe in, and in turn, your communities will do the same.

There will always be doubters. “Haters and trolls,” as Jennifer calls the critics, are inevitable. A helpful approach is seeing criticism in two ways: feedback you can’t control, and feedback about what you’re doing. Focus on the feedback on your work, and use it to help you grow.

For Jennifer, everyone that she meets inspires her because they each have their own story. No matter who they are or what they do, she knows they all have the power to drive movement and create change. The things we do, even if small, really have an impact on people - sometimes many. Speaking to the movement starter in each of us, Jennifer closes her talk by posing a question to us all:

“What kind of positive change could we bring to this world if we all cheered each other on, by being kinder to each other, by being nicer to the people around us?”

Watch the full LinkedIn Speaker Series video, or listen to the podcast.

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