Propel yourself into
The Be The Change Journey is designed to accelerate your shift into more meaningful work.
Visit pioneering changemakers blending business acumen with social purpose, explore the major models of making an impact in the world + get coaching to figure out where you fit.
You’re successful, but you want to do work that matters
On the outside, you have a great career.
On the inside, you have a nagging feeling that there’s more to life than this.
You want to do work that you care about, that you’re proud of and that makes a difference in the world.
Yet, you’re stuck.
It feels like a huge, scary leap to make a change.
Then, the choice between business and charity can seem stark. You’re not sure what the right niche is for you, or whether you’re really seeing all the opportunities.
Even if you do have some idea what contribution you’d like to make, it’s not clear how you’ll make it happen (or how to make the finances work).
And once you get home from work, there is so little time to really explore what’s possible.
Yet, at the same time...
Thousands of people like you have successfully made the shift to meaningful work
They haven't had to start from the bottom again. They are still earning good salaries. And they're having the time of their life in one of the most exciting, rewarding, high-growth sectors on the planet.
It’s no longer a world where you have to necessarily choose between profit and purpose.
Worldwide, social innovation is giving rise to a whole spectrum of organisations blazing a path between pure business and pure charity -- a sector that JP Morgan predicts could attract US$1 trillion in investments by 2020.
In short, there's never been a better time to start doing work that matters.
Be The Change Journey is designed to accelerate your shift into meaningful work
The Be The Change Journey is an immersive experience in India, exposing you to the major models for making an impact in the world. You will visit pioneering changemakers, with many blending business acumen with social purpose. At the same time, intensive career coaching will allow you to pinpoint your own passion for change and the niche where your strengths will matter most.
Over eight days, you will amass the knowledge, inspiration and focus you need to move forward. Be The Change Journey incorporates a ready network of leaders worldwide for you to tap into -- a personalised fast-track to your future of positive, rewarding work.
You will also rejuvenate your soul in one of the most breathtaking places on earth.
1. Get clear on the way you can contribute most to the world
It is hard to figure things out when you’re working full-time. We believe time, space and an unusual environment are great ingredients for a breakthrough.
That’s why the journey will take place in India.
It’s also the place where high-impact models for social change are evolving most rapidly on the planet. You’ll visit some extraordinary organisations in action, witnessing social enterprises, a social investment fund, a high impact non-profit and a pioneering corporate partnership close-up. You’ll discover first-hand which approaches inspire you the most.
At the same time, you will be facilitated through challenging coaching questions to help you find alignment with your skills, your passion, and your calling.
2. Make valuable contacts to help with your shift
More than 80% of the jobs in the impact space are not advertised. Making your shift will be as much dependent on who you know, as what you know.
On Be the Change journey, you’ll be part of a supportive peer group: hand-selected, like-minded professionals looking to make the same shift.
You’ll meet remarkable changemakers in India, many who themselves made the shift from private sector careers to meaningful work. Their inventive ways of helping others are being studied and replicated worldwide and their networks span the globe.
You’ll have access to the journey leaders, Rosie and Richard, whose extensive networks span the non-profit, social entrepreneurship, responsible business, innovation and sustainability spaces.
And you’ll also join the Journeys for Change alumni network, giving you access to more than 200 socially conscious leaders from around the world, working in organisations as diverse as Ashoka, Acumen, Habitat for Humanity, INSEAD, Médecins Sans Frontiere, Natura, Nike, Novo Nordisk, UK National Health Service, Vodafone Foundation and UnLtd.
3. Be inspired by a breathtaking country
Dazzling, intense, surprising, stirring. India challenges and inspires on every front.
It’s not only an emerging superpower, but also a hotbed for social innovation.
During your journey you will stay in stunning heritage properties, whilst also getting the chance to go behind the scenes, accessing parts of India no regular tourist would reach.
Extend your travels with time for reflection on the beach in Goa, or a trip to see the Taj Mahal, Rajasthan or Kerala. We’ll help you get in touch with the people who can help you organise this.
4. Have fun
“Play seems to be the essential feature in productive thought.” - Albert Einstein
After the hard grind at work, this is your chance to let your thoughts expand. Once you’re on the ground in India, everything will be taken care of by our highly experienced team.
At times, we’ll be in the midsts of the intense bustle, sights and smells of metropolitan India; at other times, we’ll retreat into lush environments for peaceful reflection.
All you need to do is engage your imagination and enjoy the ride.
5. Get moving towards the work that brings you alive
When you start a career that makes a difference in the world, your life will transform. The Be The Change Journey is designed to be the moment you look back on and say “that was the turning point.”
Throughout this week, you will map, plan, and speak with others about your future in the world of purposeful work. Your journey leaders have helped hundreds of people make successful career changes. They are also experts in the specific mechanics of making the shift into the impact sector.
You will have expert support to face your personal obstacles -- be they financial or other fears -- and overcome them. You will push your thinking all the way to practical ideas for kickstarting the change.
Inevitably, you will go home ready to start doing this kind of work more quickly than had you not taken part.
We’ll be travelling to Ahmedabad, Mumbai and Goa
Your journey will take you to three Indian states, giving you a view of the diversity of this incredible country.
You’ll start in Ahmedabad, the home of Gandhi and a globally recognised centre of social innovation. Here we will visit MAM Movies, a media centre for film makers who come together as volunteers to make short films on important social issues and non profits. Founder Madhu Agrawal graduated from film school in California; he later left a career making documentaries and corporate films behind him, to return to India and shake up the dominant voices in media through films, festivals and nationwide competitions.
You’ll also talk with Sara Chamberlain, Technology lead of BBC Media Action’s MHealth project. It’s one of the world’s largest health collaborations, bringing together players like mobile phone companies, the Gates Foundation, state governments and household brandnames to collectively deliver healthcare services through mobile technology across multiple states in India. Sara, who previously worked in UK charities and the BBC, has remarkable insight into the intersecting worlds of government bodies, international aid organisations, foundations, CSR in corporates and more.
You’ll have time to visit Gandhi's ashram and explore the city, before we travel to Mumbai, the bustling, cosmopolitan commercial capital of India.
There, you'll visit Acumen, a global investment fund with a mission to create a world beyond poverty. They lead the way in investments that yield both financial and social returns whilst delivering affordable health, water, housing and energy to the poor.
You'll also get to meet corporate escapee Sweta Mangal, who runs Ziqitza Health Care Limited (ZHL). ZHL is a for-profit social business that has pioneered the provision of ambulances in major cities across India. Using an innovative cross-subsidy model, it provides free services to the poor.
We'll go behind the scenes with Reality Group, a stirring and inspiring hybrid model achieving change on multiple levels. The focal point is Dharavi, one of the largest slums in Asia. To challenge negative stereotypes, Reality Tours takes 1,000 visitors a month to experience the slum themselves through organised tours with local guides. The non-profit arm uses tour income to provide high quality vocational training to underpiviledged young adults living in those communities. We will meet with the co-founding entrepreneur, Chris Way, a former accountant from the UK.
UnLtd India is an incubator which finds, funds and supports social entrepreneurs. Our next guide is Tej Dhami, previously an Equities Manager at JP Morgan, now using her skills to help social start-ups across India grow and maximise their impact in the world. We’ll also have an intimate dinner with a small group of UnLtd India’s exceptional investees who have left private sector careers and and are now bringing about long term solutions to social problems in their different ways.
Your Be The Change Journey will finish in a stunning property in Goa, where you'll draw the threads of the journey together, reflect, relax and plan your next career moves.
Get clear with a unique, proven career coaching framework
You will be working on your own career transition, in parallel with others. As the outer journey progresses, you will be making an inner journey of your own.
Be The Change Journey’s powerful career change framework has been refined and proven on The Big Stretch over eleven years. You will:
Clarify your values for meaningful work
Understand you own conditions for professional satisfaction
Pinpoint the social or environmental causes which you find compelling. Define what difference you want to make, for whom; in your home community, national or overseas.
Name your vision for contribution, if you had all the confidence and resources. (The first step of every bold change is a vision.)
Clarify your preferred ‘business model’ for achieving change – and shortlist inspiring organisations in that field to research on your return home.
Audit your strengths – especially the transferable ones which extend beyond your current technical skills.
Tackle your personal trepidations about transition creatively
Convert inspiration from time away into a concrete, time-based action plan.
It’s a call to adventure. Expect to be educated, encouraged and challenged in equal measure.
Participants on previous journeys have changed their lives
Your journey leaders have made the shift themselves
Unfulfilled by selling soap powder and cars, Rosie went part time in her role as Planning Director in a London advertising agency while she transferred her skills to aid and environmental organisations like Friends of the Earth and Comic Relief. Observing how hard it is for corporate employees to reconcile their work life with their wider values for society, in 2003 she started The Big Stretch, a creative coaching journey in the Spanish mountains. She now combines this business with coaching and leadership development in the boardrooms of multinationals like Adidas and PWC. Her base has shifted from London to a subtropical island off New Zealand. Rosie has a psychology degree from Oxford University and a postgraduate qualification in photojournalism.
Richard is fascinated about how people can be the best version of themselves. Disillusioned with corporate life, he shifted from his London consulting job into the social entrepreneurship sector in 2004. He has subsequently gone on to found and co-found a number of socially-focused businesses: UnLtd India, an award-winning social incubator in India; Journeys for Change, which takes leaders to learn from the people changing the world; Impact DNA, a set of online tools to help changemakers make more impact in the world; and Careershifters, which helps people through the tricky parts of making a career change. Richard holds a degree in Management Science from Warwick University and is social entrepreneur in residence at INSEAD business school in Singapore.
The Be The Change Journey is a partnership between Journeys for Change, The Big Stretch, and Careershifters – businesses founded and run by Richard and Rosie.
The Big Stretch has pioneered the concept of life-changing coaching journeys in nature since 2003. It coaches leaders in some of the largest companies worldwide.
The Journeys for Change team has been helping international leaders create more impact in the world and hosting learning journeys to India, Brazil and the UK since 2005.
Careershifters has been a source of practical advice and inspiration for thousands of career-changers since 2006.
Why go all the way to India to discover the difference I want to make?
Firstly, we’ve seen from helping hundreds of people make big shifts that there’s something remarkably powerful about a completely different situation to facilitate a major change. When you're free from the constraints of your normal environment, new ideas come more easily. You will find you can view your own life from a different perspective, think differently and think bigger.
Secondly, India is one of the most vibrant ecosystems for social change in the world. It’s the most concentrated place for you to encounter remarkable models and people -- learning which you later apply to the causes that interest you at home.
Will there be any structured post-journey support?
Yes. You’ll have the option to continue with coaching from Rosie one-on-one after the journey. Balancing expert psychological depth with practical know-how, you might opt for this as you explore new avenues and types of organisations at home; as you make strategies for a sound financial transition, as you tackle the obstacles that life throws in your path; to effectively position your cv for your new career.
The coaching can take place anywhere in the world and is backed up by unlimited email support.
You can also set up a personalised session with Hannah Smith, who is Be The Change Journey's net-weaver in the current UK social impact scene. On hearing the difference you want to make, and the stage you are at, she will point you towards an array of relevant and interesting organisations and help you navigate these networks, dramatically accelerating your path.
I have a feeling I want to work in Africa. Will going to India help?
Potentially. It depends on exactly what you’re looking to do. If you’re clear what you want to do in a specific country in Africa, it might be better you go there and start getting work experience in the field you’re focused on. However, if you’re still exploring your options and are curious about the different models of making a difference, then the Be The Change journey could be a great choice. Vinay, one of our Journeys for Change participants, got a job not long after his India journey with the Clinton Foundation in Africa.
Can I come with my spouse / partner?
Yes. We have a 10% discount per person for couples who want to come together and both take part in the programme.
Is this programme intended for people at a certain point in their career?
The Be The Change Journey will be most powerful if you have some years of experience under your belt. It is ideal for mid-career professionals, leaders and those who are thinking about their legacy later in working life. All sorts of skills and work / life experiences turn out to be valuable and transferable in the move to meaningful work.
I can’t make these dates. Will you be running similar journeys in the future?
Yes. We are currently planning further journeys in 2016. If next year would work better for you, we recommend that you register your interest now using the application form below and mention this.
What other options are there?
Build a network and visit relevant organisations on your own: inexpensive, but it's a slow process involving many months of research and cold-contacting people with a likely low response rate.
Find volunteering opportunities: a great tactic, but the right sort of volunteering opportunities can be hard to locate, competitive to get, and require an ongoing time commitment from you on-top of your day job. Volunteering with one organisation will also only give you one perspective
Find a career coach - £120-250 / $185-395 per hour. A week’s intensive with a coach might cost £4,000+ / $6,000+. All coaches are not equal, and it's rare to get one with a strong understanding of corporate life and the social sector.
Do a master's degree: £10,000+ / $15,000+. A risky investment if you still aren't sure where your passion lies.
Do nothing. Potentially the most expensive option. At the same time, it’s also the easiest to take. Nothing will change and you’re likely to find yourself in the same position a year from now and potentially 5 or 10 years from now too.
Find out more
We're not currently running any further Be the Change Journeys. However, if you'd like to find out information about other journeys run by Journeys for Change, please send us your details below.