Meet edie's 30 Under 30 Class of 2020: Julie Dang, Canary Wharf Group
This new series profiles the members of edie's 30 Under 30 - a nomination-based community of 30 hugely talented young sustainability and energy professionals who have already achieved great things or are showing fantastic promise. Up next: Canary Wharf Group's CSR programme coodinator Julie Dang.
The future of business leadership starts right here. Earlier this year, edie unveiled the second cohort of members of its 30 Under 30 initiative – a group of bright and ambitious rising sustainability and energy stars from across the UK.
After being nominated by their colleagues and impressing judges from Global Action Plan and the Institute of Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability (ICRS), this cohort of youthful visionaries now benefit from an unrivalled opportunity to connect with one another and co-develop solutions to some of the most pressing environmental and social challenges of our time.
In this weekly series, we will be sharing their stories and successes beyond the group, giving edie readers insight into the minds of those who will be leading the charge in creating the low-carbon, resource-efficient economies of the future.
This week, it's the turn of Julie Dang, CSR programme coordinator at London-based real estate giant Canary Wharf Group (CWG).
How I got to where I am now:
"I have been working since I was 12 in my family’s small business and in various retail companies whilst studying. All of these experiences helped me gain vital skills in communication, teamwork, and adaptability which are all transferable and valuable to any career.
"After receiving a first-class honours degree in business administration from the University of Hertfordshire, I was not sure what career I wanted to get into. A few years after feeling ‘stuck’, I applied for the Eagles CSR graduate programme run by East London Business Alliance which I put all my efforts into. I highly recommend this programme to any young person thinking about a career in CSR as it provides relevant training.
"I have now been with Canary Wharf Group for three years."
My biggest career achievement to date has been:
"There are a few things I am really proud of. But, in particular, this year I designed, managed and delivered Canary Wharf Group’s first-ever involvement in the Lord Mayor’s Appeal’s ‘She Can Be’ event. This event allowed me to introduce school-aged women to a wide range of careers they may not have heard of before. This is to empower them to make informed decisions about their future careers and equip them with the skills to confidently enter the workforce.
"It was empowering for me to have the support and collaboration of the 12 other women in the business who helped bust some myths about our industry. Following this, I co-produced content which is now on the @shecanbe_ Instagram page.
"Also, I achieved certification for my Prince2® Project Management this year, which will enhance me in my career!"
The biggest challenge I have encountered along the way is:
"The way that corporate culture influences staff engagement and behaviour. In order for a company to be truly responsible, it takes the whole team to understand what we’re trying to achieve and work together to attain it continually.
"It’s important to inspire and empower our peers when enhancing CSR in any company. So, it was great to speak with our chief executive and know that he is keen to champion our work."
If I had to describe my generation in one word or phrase, I would say:
"Actively defying stereotypes."
A successful 2020-21 for me looks like:
"Enhancing our CSR programmes and efforts to be even more meaningful - and significantly increasing internal and external involvement in them. Hopefully, this will be a step further in making the world a better and fairer place."
Outside of my career, I enjoy:
"Pretty much anything creative. I love exploring art exhibitions, making things (garments, food, crafts) and getting creative with digital content. With this, I’ve helped students and small businesses with promoting their fashion and artwork."
My ‘Mission Possible’ message for business is:
"Sustainability and corporate responsibility shouldn’t be something you do in addition to your business strategy but something you just do.
"Expectations of businesses to be more responsible are ever-increasing so being thoughtful, innovative and committed to positive change should be at the core business decisions and this can be achieved through collaboration."
My key piece of advice for any young professionals entering my industry today is:
"Be proactive and look for opportunities as they will not always come to you. If you want something, you must be willing to come out of your comfort zone to achieve it.
"I recently read a book by Jim Kwik which I loved. It said 'your background and circumstances may have influenced who you are, but having a limitless mindset means that you do not allow them to stop you from achieving your goals.'"
The full Class of 2020 membership is detailed here.
To stay in the loop for 2021 nominations for the 30 Under 30, email firstname.lastname@example.org.