It all started when I attended a webinar in April to understand how to leverage LinkedIn for Giving Circle. While the webinar was conducted by energetic Divya Shlokam, I was pleasantly surprised that it was for free! It was then I realized what a unique way of giving to society, thus a new story was born!
Divya Shlokam, wears multiple hats and a name to reckon with. I decided to interview her and talk about her unique volunteering mission ‘Leverage LinkedIn’. It is helping thousands of people and companies to leverage LinkedIn app for showcasing their strategies, engagement or to develop content to hit the right audience. This is helping them to brand themselves and increase their networking more. Her target is to help 6 million people globally through this project which is initiated by LinkedIn users.
To begin with, I asked Divya how she came up with this idea. She flashed her million dollar smile and said it all started in April 2020 when many people came to her to take advice on career growth, job change and some on business expansion during this pandemic. Being the entrepreneur and knowing the power of LinkedIn, she knew how much this app has helped in building her own business. She felt the need to help others to use this app in the most successful way. Her first webinar on 29 April 2020 taught the audience how through LinkedIn, they can connect with the right people and be visible on this platform. By mid-June, just one and a half months post her webinar, many have benefitted from this unconventional wisdom and today she has more than 100 volunteers in this project.
I realised it’s no mean feat to accomplish what Divya is doing. When I mentioned this, she nodded saying she has many years of volunteering experience and in the past was part of some key projects like Navjyoti India Foundation of Kiran Bedi project.
Intrigued, I wanted to know more about her growing years and how she managed to climb the ladder of success in such a short time. With a twinkle in her eyes she said she grew up in a middle class Sikh family which had a strong value system. Her parents taught her to give and share freely. They believed even if your needs are not met, share whatever you have with others. With this strong foundation under her belt she decided to share her knowledge and wisdom with the world.
Today, Divya is a successful coach in Personal Branding, Social Media and in Thought Leadership She also hosts ‘Value Addition Global Show’ which helps the audience to ask questions to eminent leaders in the industry about personal, professional or business growth.
As the interview progressed, I realised how some people lead their lives dictated by their roots and how many of us miss this critical lesson. Shifting my thoughts back to the interview, I asked the most critical question, how does one volunteer in this kind of a project? It’s simple, she said. Any person who comments on her post, projects the posts and shares it with their network of friends, families, organisation or even gives reference is a volunteer.
But how does she manage so many virtual volunteers and isn’t that a hassle? Divya shook her head and said in fact her project strengths are her volunteers and gives them all the credit. ‘Being the Chief Global Contributor’ for this volunteering initiative, she binds her volunteers with one single goal of reaching a target of 6 million users globally over 200 countries. Her band of dedicated volunteers are helping in spreading the word and sharing the LinkedIn handle as you read. Some volunteers prefer to work silently in the background but they are the ones who are spreading this initiative and influencing this project. Being a true entrepreneur, she engages with her volunteers through weekly meetings and encourages them to pick up any volunteering activity they love to do. Putting her hand up and showing her fingers, she explains, just like all 5 fingers are not of the same size, volunteers too have different needs and she gives them the opportunity to pick and choose what they want to do. This helps them to stay motivated and engaged in this project.
Divya’s unique way of volunteering has made corporations and people sit up and notice that volunteering is not always about giving money or time. Volunteering can also mean knowledge sharing. When she started this project, she was not sure how it would pan out but in less than 2 months’ from her first webinar, she has touched thousands of people. Today many organisations, schools and companies are reaching out to take her help in leveraging social media to their advantage.
When asked if she wants to share any thoughts with the readers, Divya says there is no dearth of goodness in this world and people are giving without the world knowing their good deed. While most people like to be anonymous, she feels in the current situation, it is important to share what you have done because it will help another person to step forward to either give or share. Shaking her head, she says the days of ‘ Don’t let the left hand know what the right hand is doing ‘ is passé’. The world today needs encouragement to volunteer.
As I bid goodbye to Divya, I felt the one good deed I can do is to share her story to inspire you to volunteer in whatever way you can and make this world a better place to live.
We at Giving Circle are always looking at sharing unique stories with our readers so you too will be encouraged. Giving Circle is a platform to celebrate goodness, bring such heartwarming inspiring unique stories to light and offer a complete ecosystem for them to scale up their good deeds- Explore our circles of goodness to know more.