A Day In The Life

Kawika Solidum

Kawika Solidum

Posted 01 June 2015

London Program

September 2005 Intake

Kawika Solidum (September 2005 - London), was an undergraduate at University of Texas Austin, MSc at LSE, is the new Chief Executive of BeyondMe, a UK-based charity spearheading a movement of professionals and businesses joining together with charities and social enterprises to make a meaningful impact by giving time, skills and money to causes that need it most.

Morning: My day starts very early. My two-year-old son rises with the sun, which at this time of the year can we well before 5:30am. He keeps me on my toes because his routine is as important as mine! After I drop him off at his nursery, I jump on a call with the Chair of my Board at 8:15am. It's a great conversation centered on the key tenets of the new strategy we're crafting. We don't rush to make decisions, instead we keep an open-mind on all our ideas.

By 9:30am I'm on a train and I get half an hour to check emails. I'm heading to a meeting with the Global Head of People and Talent at one of the leading accountancy firms, to give her an update on our multi-year partnership. The best conversations are when I speak to business leaders like her who understand that millennials - people born in the 80s and 90s - have a strong desire to lead puposeful lives and expect their employers to be ever-more socially responsible corporate citizens.

Lunchtime: I take 20 minutes to call my Head of Partnerships to give her an update on my meeting. Then I grab a sandwich with a participant of BeyondMe's programme. He tells me about the latest project his team completed and his team's dynamic. He also asks me about what he can do to position himself to be a future charity board member. It's fantastic when individuals want to work directly with non-profits long after our 12-month programme; that's success to me!

Afternoon: When I get back to my desk I spend a couple of hours reviewing my meeting notes. In my first 90 days I've spent a lot of time meeting our stakeholders. My goal is to find the best way to bring together our ambitions, supporters and resources to provide even greater value to the charities in our portfolio. My last meeting is a brainstorm session with my whole team. The teakettle is on and there are scattered stacks of Post-its. My team is incredibly dedicated, energetic and fun - and they are always poised to deliver their best every day!

The question we're tackling is the one that keeps me awake at night: what parts of our work must we keep the same or innovate, in order to enable more professionals to convene to give their best? I believe that by continually asking this question we will always be creating a better network of teams and professionals that will have a greater social impact than it already does. And that's how BeyoneMe will succeed in empowering our generation to be the most generous generation yet.

If you'd like to get involved in giving to a charity or social enterprise in the best way possible, visit BeyondMe.Org, follow @BeyondMeOrg. You can also drop me an email.