Sara Chojnacki, the founder of Hello Sara Christine talks to The Ortus Club’s Lorna Davidson about the future of knowledge-sharing and how it opened doors for more intimate opportunities that allow people across different industries, cultures, and nationalities to widen their horizons about the world’s most pressing issues.
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Who are the sort of people attending knowledge-sharing events and why do they attend?
I’m meeting the best people in the world. I’m meeting somebody from Ireland, Poland, Boston, California and Iowa on the same call, and we’re all dealing with similar challenges. I’ve been able to meet change-makers that inspire me when I hear their stories.
These leaders come to the table to say, “How can I do better? How can I do something different so people can emotionally connect with my service product?” The only way to do that is to seek outside help and that is courageous in itself.
Asking for help is probably one of the hardest things. Back in 2020, the trend is that “We would never share, that’s confidential, it’s inside the organisation”. Now, I feel like we’ve gotten that permission to share.
Leaders today are dealing with everything. They didn’t just deal with the pandemic and work from home. They’re dealing with mental health, inclusivity, diversity, company culture, and more. All of a sudden, their internal people have become just as important as their external clients. These are the types of people who show up to these knowledge-sharing events that I’ve been to. They’ve got the biggest challenges, and this kind of container is a way for them to release what they’ve been going through.
What’s next for knowledge-sharing opportunities in the years to come?
What’s next is more of these intimate settings. People are hungry for good quality networking. The future of knowledge-sharing is global-sharing. That’s being able to see things from the perspective of different companies, different cultures, different verticals, different industries. Partnerships are no longer staying within borders. That’s where knowledge-sharing is the starting point. If you want to converse with somebody about your own experience, trends or challenges, it is a huge door opening to say “welcome”, there could be partnerships, there could be solutions. That’s where we must go as leaders to solve these huge challenges of inclusivity, diversity, mental health and well-being, retention, acquisition- there’s just a lot of big things on our plate.
“The future of knowledge-sharing is global-sharing: really being able to see things from the perspective of different companies, different cultures, different verticals, different industries. Partnerships no longer stay within the borders, and that’s where knowledge-sharing is the starting point.”
What’s your best advice for making the most of knowledge-sharing events?
Participate, participate, participate. Do not be afraid. From my perspective as a moderator, it’s my job to make sure that everyone feels safe, seen and heard, and make sure we go around the room. One thing about these sessions is that they are anonymous. We’re not recording. We’re not taking this away, so it is as if we’re attending an intimate private dinner. So I just encourage people to speak up, participate, and share what keeps them up at night. Knowledge-sharing is an opportunity to get advice from leaders and see what they’re doing and how they’re doing it. I just think you can’t find that anywhere else. Knowledge-sharing roundtables are so much more valuable now than any kind of tool or resource that we can get our hands on. It’s incredible.