In our Trailblazers series, we bring you individual perspectives on creative leadership, social innovation, and positive change from THNK’s worldwide alumni community. Marcus Breekweg, a former executive with Vodafone, burnt out in late 2011: ‘I couldn’t generate any more forward energy,’ he says. It took half a year to get himself back to work, but something in him had changed.
I left my corporate life at Vodafone in need of a new challenge — I didn’t want to sell products or services just for profit anymore. I wanted to put my skill and energy towards something that would create positive social impact. As I was mulling over what to do, I was invited to participate in a
THNK Forum about smart cities. This is where I realized that design thinking was a way to find what I really wanted to do, to pursue a passion — and to grow. It was exactly what I needed at just the right moment.
In my work, I had only ever used my rational and analytical brain. I needed to bring the human element back. I felt ready for something radically different. Together with three co-founders, I started my own company: Undagrid.