Amanda Reflects

June 16, 2023
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Today marks my first year at Swell+Good—and while this past year has been full of changes and challenges, there has been so much personal and professional growth that I am proudly reflecting on. I took a leap of faith when I started this role, entering a different industry, with a new/old team, in a completely remote setting. And even though I encountered some self-doubt, I embraced the challenge, my team, and our work culture, and I learned that it doesn’t have to be crazy at work. (Which was a huge win when compared to previous roles.)

Here are a few other key things I’ve learned…

Starting a new journey, be it professional or personal, can lead to a lot of incredible growth simply by taking that initial risk. Just this year, I have had the opportunity to work on a wide range of projects, including Q4 fundraising, galas, silent auctions, website redesigns, and even attending a summit on digital fundraising and nonprofit marketing (NIO). That experience, and the year as a whole, has broadened my perspective and deepened my understanding of the work nonprofits do and how we support them.

How to find balance in work, organize tasks, plan ahead, only worry about what is in my control, and let go of what I can’t have a handle on. All of these concepts, while straightforward, were things I had always struggled with. I previously worked in a hectic industry (pharmaceuticals), which was interesting and professionally challenging, but balance was nonexistent. It felt even more overwhelming because I was onboarded remotely and never really knew or connected with my team or staff. Which leads me to another important realization…

Knowing your peers, understanding their strengths, and cultivating relationships with your coworkers is at the core of great teamwork. As some of you may know, I had worked with Ian and Allison before, so I trusted their direction, vision, and talent—all of which have made Swell+Good grow into what it is today: a small but mighty agency that produces great work, shares great stories, and loves helping our clients reach their campaign goals. We are constantly learning and challenging each other, which is another benefit of working with friends—we know our areas of improvement and we know each other’s potential. Because of our great team, I am happy where I am and I am happy with the risk I took a year ago.

Self-reflection matters. Taking the time to pause, discuss areas of improvement as a team,  and assess my own professional progress and growth has allowed me to celebrate my achievements, acknowledge areas for growth, and set new goals. I have learned to embrace both successes and failures as valuable learning experiences, and I am grateful for the opportunities that have shaped me into the professional I am today. Looking forward, I am eager to build upon this foundation—and I encourage you to pause and take a moment to self-reflect, too. Think about where you are, what led you there, what you’re grateful for, and how it could be better.

Amanda Agundiz

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