From two unsuccessful applications to becoming The Futures Board Chairperson
Written by Aisha Malik, Director of Business Operations at Captify
The Futures Board is an initiative that was introduced in 2017 by Captify’s Co-Founders, Adam Ludwin and Dominic Joseph, whereby the next generation of leaders (a junior board of directors) steer change and drive forward new initiatives within the business. This nominated board of global Captifiers collaborate with the Founders and Investors to shape and influence how the business is run.
I applied for the Futures Board the previous two years and hadn’t been successful. However, on the final date for the 2019/2020 applications, I decided to give it one more shot by applying with a product-based idea for the company. When it was announced that I had won a seat on the board, I was truly honoured to be selected from over 50 applicants.
The 2019/2020 Futures Board was the most diverse team since its launch, consisting of 9 Captifiers from across the UK, US, France and Ukraine with very unique personalities. Our mission statement (created by the team) which all decisions were based up was:
‘Through representing 250+ employees across all markets, a group of 9 will bring unity on a global scale by encompassing/emphasising Captify’s truths – through the people, the practice and the product’.
I can honestly say it was an incredible experience to be part of such an impactful initiative – I’ve felt empowered to drive forward new innovations and initiatives. Some of the key lessons I’ve learnt along the way which have helped me grow professionally, as well as personally are:
1. Your voice always matters so make it heard!: Never be afraid to challenge the status quo and voice your opinion (regardless of years of experience or job title) if you’re passionate about steering and innovating the business.
2. Confident communication leads to more captivating debates: This is a platform that allows you to engage in challenging debates and lively discussions in a safe space – not only will this improve the way in which you approach sensitive topics, but will allow you to do so confidently and articulately.
3. A shared vision is key in steering change: The topics we raised with the Founders and Investors were already being discussed at a board level, which proved that people of any level of the business can think strategically. This also showed how aligned we are within the business and this helped to shape the conversations we were having throughout the year.
4. Everything comes back to values: Challenges will always occur across the business, but working collaboratively to discuss and develop the most effective solutions spotlighted our Captify values at their finest.
5. Unity can happen, even with distance: The pandemic posed a challenge for everyone as we adjusted to WFH life. As the Futures Board we wanted to keep the business connected and the Captify culture alive. During this time, we launched some new initiatives to bring everyone together, such as the ‘Coffee Lounge’ which enabled Captifyers across the globe to stay connected and the ‘Good Deeds Initiative’, which gave Captifiers the opportunity to showcase their cooking skills in a live session.
Being part of the Futures Board has been a gamechanger for me – I’ve grown in so many ways, such as building my self-confidence and developing my ability to present to a large audience and have been fortunate enough to gain insight into areas of the business that I probably wouldn’t have otherwise been exposed to.
Captify’s Co-Founders recently announced to the business that I’ve been appointed as the 2020/2021 Futures Board Chairperson. In this role, I will moderate the sessions with the new Futures Board and drive forward the agenda, ensuring that everyone has the chance to speak and express their opinions.
I can’t wait to develop my leadership skills further in this new role and collaborate with this year’s Futures Board (which will soon be revealed)!
If you’re inspired to apply to Captify’s Futures Board next year or kick start something similar at your own business, I’m a prime example to show there’s nothing stopping you.