I am friends with the co-founders. We went to business school together. I was familiar with their company and their goals before, but wow. The video hit me like a ton of bricks.
They are doing amazing work in South Africa. When I first got to business school, I had never heard of corporate social responsibility. This may not be surprising since I worked in the oil industry. But within the first month, this new reality of business being a force for good in society had drawn me in and made me a believer. I knew I wanted to work toward making the planet better in my post-MBA career.
Clearly, Emzingo is doing exactly that. I want my to pour my professional efforts into making a difference somehow. Though working at Siemens Wind Power is part of the larger effort of combating climate change, it’s not the same and my contribution is extremely diluted. There is no human-to-human interaction in my career the way Emzingo is making a difference at the ground level.
I guess the most striking takeaway from this was that my friends were “doing it”. They were out there making a measureable difference in the lives of both MBA students and the people in South Africa. It wasn’t some Ted Talk or some book. They were people I knew and they were out there making an an impact. I realized I could do it too. I could follow my dreams. I could make an impact.