A good friend of mine once asked me how heavy a polar bear weighs and with my inability to answer, she responded by saying that it’s heavy enough to break the ice and then pretended to introduce herself to me.
I find that a number of workshops and talks I truly remember always had heavy polar bears or, in other words, impactful icebreakers. I think the polar bear was heavy enough in Founders Circle 1 that I found myself focused on completing the task and taking to heart what completing the task meant, as explained by Jojo Fresnedi of Except One.
We were paired up and each person was bound at the wrists by rope. Each pair was, in a way, stuck together and each pair had to separate themselves from each other without removing the rope.
I was paired with Jun Waide of Venteny. Despite our many attempts to contort into different shapes, we were only able to complete the task with Jojo’s hint.
The point of the rope activity was to remind us of the role of founders. Day in and day out, founders are faced with challenges they must overcome. To overcome these challenges, founders have to think outside of the box. They have to look for solutions in places others would’ve missed. It’s their job to get us out of being stuck and their ability to get us unstuck is what sets them apart from the rest. My key learning here was that before people become founders, they must learn to look for challenges and gain experience in overcoming these challenges to truly turn them into founders. Without constant practice, founders will not become founders, and as such, their ability may become a way of life. True founders might just be the ones who can’t get through the day without solving problems.
More than just honing their ability to solve problems, founders do what they do for a reason. Jojo explained that within every founder is a true purpose that he or she wants to fulfill. Purpose, as Jojo explained, is like a drug that keeps us awake, alive, and healthy. It is the reason why we get up in the morning. Although our purpose may not be as clear or as specific now, we may already have an idea on what it should always have. For founders, I realized that their purpose is always directed towards others, most especially those beyond their usual circles. Regardless of the wording and the context, a founder’s purpose is to help others in their own way. Each founder was given a set of gifts and it is in using these gifts that founders hope to do good in the world for the sake of others.
Andre talked about how he wanted to pursue the National Movement For Greatness because he wanted to promote the mark of Filipino excellence.
Wayne Silby shared his purpose was to help others be in touch with their inner selves.
Anton Diaz shared that he has an eye for trends and that he believes that the BPO industry’s workforce has so much potential to do more than jobs that may end up becoming automated in a few years.
Without thinking about it, the founders in the room were already connected. They were connected by the desire to lead with purpose.
I thought about my own purpose and how it relates to my work in Ignite Founders. I believe that my people skills are great gifts that I can use to support founders. I am able to relate to people easily and I am able to understand what kind of people they are. With these gifts, I can help founders understand themselves better and thus help them build more meaningful ventures. I also believe that my passion for helping others unleash their full potential will be beneficial to founders. I am motivated by the fact that people can always become better versions of themselves and I want people to get a first, second, third, fourth chance at making a difference in their own lives and in the lives of others.
I draw my strength from my relationships and I am who I am because of those around me. I see that founders may also draw their strength from each other and be connected by the grand purpose of helping others and making a real difference in society. I understand the value of building a community that fosters a sense of purpose and a sense of real being by living out this purpose and I want Founders Circle to be this community.