Finding Your Work Why Through Documentary Storytelling

Current workplace narratives highlight the negative. The after effects of #metoo, the wage, and the glaring diversity problems. Elena believes there aren’t enough positive stories about the workplace. Positive stories have the power to shift bias, counter balance and inform our brains in positive ways. More importantly, it has the power to drive connection between leaders, employees, and the work they do.

Documentary storytelling can expose, inspire and bring the world closer together by showcasing the shared experiences of work. From young people on the West Side of Chicago to midlife career changers, visual stories enable people to be what they can see.

And it starts with finding your Ikigai, “Ikigai” is a Japanese concept that roughly translates to the reason for being. It is the intersection where one’s passions and talents converge with the things that the world needs and is willing to pay for.  It’s the quintessential American dream: making careers out of passions, talents, what the world needs, and what they can get paid for. These stories are all around us and take many forms:a potter, machinist, or a nurse. In Elena’s talk she’ll share the conditions of what makes work meaningful from the worker stories she has collected with producing over 1400+ videos of people in the workplace. Through their stories we can better reflect on our own dreams while laying the groundwork for companies to think differently about everything from their culture to diversity and inclusion efforts.

Moving Beyond the Mission: Inspiring and Aligning Meaningful Work