Deloitte recently concluded its 17th annual Impact Day 2019. This programme gives an opportunity to its employees to volunteer for different projects, which can make an ‘impact’ on the public. Over the past editions, the programme has been focussing on a variety of topics, which can make a difference to the society. However, this year, Deloitte decided to focus particularly on helping people develop job skills, improve educational outcomes, and get access to opportunities to succeed in the world of tomorrow. It was aligned with the ‘World Class’ initiative, which was launched by Punit Renjen, global CEO, Deloitte. The ‘World Class’ initiative aims to prepare 10 million women and girls for a world of opportunity and 50 million people for the future of work.
This year, the projects were based on themes, such as career counselling, coaching on interview skills, learning through art, storytelling, sports, and awareness building on various topics.
The programme, which took place in two phases— on 29 November and 6 December, respectively—saw participation from employees at all levels, including the top leadership. The Company claims that it is the Millennials—comprising 80 per cent of the total workforce—who always take the lead in the programme.
As the initiative is aimed at bringing about a positive effect on the lives of others, it ends up bringing about a change in the lives of the volunteers and project leaders as well.
Leading projects under the ‘Impact Day’ programme requires strong people- management skills.
“Project leaders and volunteers learn empathy, patience, and the importance of having a positive outlook, in the face of stumbling blocks. These are all learnings that contribute to a better professional, as well as a better citizen,” says SV Nathan, partner & chief talent officer, Deloitte India.
There are many experiences of employees who have participated in the programme. Sonali Fabiani, a Deloitte employee, conducted workshops on identifying personality types, resume writing, interview skills, and career counselling, for children at Abhyudaya Nagar Municipal School in Parel, Mumbai, in 2018. This year, she collaborated with Asha Sadan, which houses children from vulnerable backgrounds in Dongri, Mumbai. She believes that whatever knowledge we have and which can help others to build better careers, should be shared to create a significant impact in someone’s life.
“Project leaders and volunteers learn empathy, patience, and the importance of having a positive outlook, in the face of stumbling blocks. These are all learnings that contribute to a better professional, as well as a better citizen”
Project leaders liaise with NGOs to identify the optimal number of people required to complete the activity at hand. Registrations for projects are done on a first come basis. The objective is to allow each volunteer to be able to make a concrete contribution to her/his project.
Employees offering to be project leaders receive guidance from internal teams, such as talent and CSR, to coordinate with the NGOs, get the necessary due diligence documentation done and obtain permissions, create a project plan, and host the same on an internal registration portal for prospective participants.
“Awareness about the projects is built through internal communications. The CSR and talent teams continue to remain available for any support that project leaders or volunteers require. Some senior leaders also visit multiple projects in their respective cities, to motivate volunteers to keep up the good work,” shares Nathan.
This programme also helps the organisation cater to the ambitions of the Millennials in the company.
“Most of our employees are Millennials and they strongly wish to play a positive role. They yearn to be active participants and not mere spectators,” mentions Nathan.
The wider purpose of this activity is to inculcate a habit of volunteering amongst the employees of Deloitte.
“It’s about putting one’s passion, determination, and skills to use for the benefit of the communities in which we operate,” concludes Nathan.