When speaking to Alma Ramirez, this E.M. Forster jumped to the forefront of my mind, “One person with passion is better than forty people merely interested.” She exudes passion for learning and social entrepreneurship. She’s Monterrey, Mexico’s very own ‘one person’ who is trying to spread her passion universally. She does this through her social innovation consulting company, Unboxed. But before all of that, Alma was seeking inspiration as a university administrator and lifelong learner. when She found Leadership exCHANGE and aligned with the program’s zeal for social change so well that she was invited to be an instructor.
In it’s origin, Ramirez and her partner inquired “What kind of project can we do where we can promote social entrepreneurship and new business structures?”
In the process of answering that ambitious question, she found that she wanted to solve the problem of indifference. “We believe that we’ve got to participate on building solutions that we all face as humanity. Inspired by the ‘Big Corporation’ movements and ‘conscious capitalism’ that bring together different ways to do business, we decided to launch a consulting firm to accelerate movements locally, in Mexico.”
Ramirez employers her business background to explore how business could enhance the effectiveness of social movements on three levels to create holistic change in indifference. “We work with universities and local industry on anything from an hour session to a 3-day bootcamp and everything in between.”
“We work with entrepreneurs in early stages in coaching sessions where we help build a business model considering their potential triple impact; people, profit and planet.”
“With more developed companies and corporations, we have been working to evaluate their impact and strategies for sustainability and development issues. We do a lot of leadership training with them because a corporation’s largest responsibility in their workers. We reconfigure the culture so that it brings out the companies’ values instead of having them listed.”
How Ramirez Got Involved as an Instructor
Before embarking on her entrepreneurial journey, Ramirez was the Leadership Development Coordinator at the University of Monterrey. Here, she was looking for the best leadership opportunities with a global perspective for her students. This is where she found GLP.
At first, it started when the University sent a few students on the trip. Then Ramirez and her colleague had the opportunity to run some of the trips in our Panama program. “They say the best way to learn something is to teach it. For my partner and I, having the opportunity to teach students from around the world opened our eyes to the potential for impact and the amazing point in history where business can become a change-maker.”
“My other business partner was a student on the 2013 trip. I saw her passion and I invited her to work for our staff at the University. By the end of the program, I thought we should be making impact together in the future. GLP became a way to spread the word that there is hope, in a world where there is so much tragedy. It’s something that starts a spark where you can’t go back home and back to the same way of thinking, you just have to do something with that.”
What is GLP to Ramirez?
For Ramirez, GLP was about creating a team that could create change. Ramirez and her team experienced the ‘aha’ moment of potential for social impact together. “For us, sharing the GLP experience built up the foundation of what we believe can be done. Now, that conviction is one of the strengths of Unboxed.”
One of the most pressing questions I had for her was really where it all came from? Ramirez says it’s just a natural excitement. “I love to learn, and the best way for me to learn is to travel and experience learning first hand. I thought, if that works for me, it must work for my students. GLP is how I can learn with the students. That made me a better professor.”
“I think for me it does come naturally, because it is what I feel passionate about. Over time, I have developed my ability to build up meaningful relationships. Learning how to build meaningful relationships is a skill that I have consciously developed after seeing what a powerful network could do. Especially in helping me build these amazing experiences for my students.”
Go on the program Alma took all of her inspiration from here