Impact Jobs’ CEO Kristina Bohnerth got the opportunity to be interview by Impact Breakfast Club. This is how it turned out.
Before turning to the area of sustainability, Kristina Bohnerth studied Archeology, longing for the day she would eventually find her path. During her Bachelor studies, she met with career counselors and explained that she wanted a career in which she could make an impact, but her efforts were in vain as none of them would understand what she meant. It was not until after graduating that she found her path while coming across a Sustainable Development program at Uppsala University.
And there she was, 2 years later, on the job market with a Master’s degree in Sustainable Development. “I was really eager to make an impact and to start working”, she recalls. “I found it to be easier said than done, to find a good match when looking for a job. It is the employers´ market. They receive so many applications, they always replied that they selected other applicants”. Her frustration grew as she realized how many job seekers have skills and competencies that are not in use. In conclusion it is a catch 22 situation: you need the experience but never get the chance to get it. Therefore in September 2019, after her maternity leave she started her own business, and became Impact Jobs’ CEO, helping value-driven job seekers to find a job with impact. “That has been my mission ever since.” she adds.
Impact Jobs Sverige is a platform with sustainability jobs, as well as inspiration for purpose-driven job seekers such as blog, event calendar or capacity building for people to create a sustainable career.
Kristinas core values…
The values driving most of Kristina’s decisions in life go down to the basics of sustainability. It’s linked to the mission to leave the planet and the world better than it is. She describes: “I think it’s compassion and the will to make the world better for everyone. I have a strong calling into contributing to a better tomorrow as much as I can”. Despite being aware that one person cannot change it all, she strongly believes that we should individually take our responsibility.
and her future plans!
Now what is Kristina’s next step forward? “My plan is definitely to expand Impact Jobs, in the sense that I want every job seeker in the sustainability sector to be aware of us and to be able to set demands on their employers.” It is time for us to unite, speak up and take ownership of our wellbeing. “There are two huge problems in our corporate landscape at the moment. Firstly, we work too much which leads to burnouts. Secondly, too many people are working with a job they don’t actually like which also can lead to mental illness. Either is not sustainable”, she adds. She wants to help employees to take care of themselves and their health. “A sustainable career for me is that you are working with something you like, at a company that creates positive impact in society and takes care of their employees.”
And for her personal life, her next project is to buy a house in Sweden. “I want my child to be close to his grandmother and relatives, and I really want to start growing my own food and maybe even have some bees and chickens”. After 5 years in Berlin, she feels that it is time for her to go back to nature and appreciate what it has to offer. “I got inspired by the Netflix documentary Kiss the ground,about the value of our soil. Pesticides are problematic, so now I am really determined to grow my own food!”.
Working for a better tomorrow
“One thing I really wanna see change in our society is the will of change in people. For instance, we have spent so much time gathering information, looking at the problem and finding solutions. Now we have solutions and it’s time to implement them”. According to her, all we need to implement these solutions is a stronger will, at all levels: government, politicians, businesses, and individuals, both as consumers and as producers. “Above all I really think that we have come to this point when everyone needs to look at themselves and ask what can I do to contribute? How can I make the future more sustainable?”.
Kristina pauses to reflect. “The problem is that many of us need to compromise our standards of living.” she states. Indeed, it is not comfortable for politicians to say we need to raise taxes on gasoline, for example. “But we don’t have much time, we need to find the courage and commitment to make these changes happen! That is the biggest change I want to see in the future, that everyone gets on board on what has to be done. If everyone does that, then we can fix this.”
Change can be achieved
As Impact Jobs’ CEO Kristina believes that this change should be able to achieve through enlightenment. “We need awareness on all levels. The government can support, but also then again individuals need to educate themselves. We can’t afford to be passive anymore”. However, changing habits such as flying less or eating less meat starts when we know the impact of our actions on climate and when we want to minimize it.
And she keeps thinking about how to make a bigger impact. “Something [more] we can do for a sustainable future is to include those who think differently. We should embrace all ways of thinking and reach out to more people. Everyone could make an effort on not being judgmental and go beyond you social bubble.” She explains that according to her a polarised environment makes people think that sustainability experts are fighting for their own cause, while she believes that they “just want to live in a world with fresh air, clean water and enough food to eat” for everyone. She compares this phenomenon to Cassandra’s prophecies from Greek Mythology. “Since she told people about the catastrophic prophecies they could be anticipated and prevented, so in the end her prophecies never turned true. It is the same with us. In other words, I never want to sound alarmist but now we are running out of time.”
Becoming a member at the Impact Breakfast Club
Kristina first heard about the Impact Breakfast Club on Facebook. As Impact Jobs’ CEO she thought that would be the perfect fit. But the event was planned in Stockholm before the coronavirus crisis. “They were supposed to meet for breakfast in Stockholm. I wanted to join but I was in Berlin. ”Then with the COVID-19 restrictions, the Club moved to online meetings, which made it possible for Kristina to attend. “And then I stayed because of all the amazing people. Every time we meet I am filled with empowerment and energy for the day. In addition, the whole community makes me very happy and hopeful because they are a group of people that are, as me, ready to make a huge effort into shaping the future more sustainably. It is such a boost when you meet people like that!”
Thank you so much Morgane Meignen and IBC for the spolight!
See the original interview at Impact Breakfast homepage here.