Prarthana Sharma

“With great power comes great responsibility!”- Voltaire

This is a quote most of us are familiar with (especially all the Spiderman lovers!). Over the years, it has been my personal motto to be responsible towards people and society that I live in. As a young kid in India, I always hoped that once I started my career, I would make every effort in my capacity to contribute to society. 

To briefly introduce myself, I am Prarthana Sharma and I am on the first year rotation of the graduate programme in Reading. Through my first blog, I would like to share my memorable experiences of citizenship at Barclays - an aspect that people don’t always associate with banking anymore but that I have seen being put into action within Barclays.

Start of a new journey

My first chance of living the Barclays values came quite early, a week after joining. As a part of the citizenship project, we got to support a not for profit organization by devising a sustainable social media strategy for them to engage more people online. We worked as a team with our community partner, understanding their work and using our skills, and implemented a social media plan that aligned with their vision.

It was a humbling experience to learn about the fabulous work that our community partner does - helping disadvantaged young people through music and arts. I can never forget the day when we finally produced our deliverables.  We were so proud of our little success and taking them a step closer to fulfilling their dream. It was my first ever experience of citizenship at Barclays and without a doubt, a truly gratifying one.

A small but exciting step further

But this was just the beginning of my journey at Barclays. 

A yet another unforgettable opportunity came up a month later when, as a part of a graduate team, I raised funds for a charity that supports young kids. As a team, we came up with different initiatives that included a cake sale, charity raffle, Blue Friday and curry lunch across three different regional offices. Our grand finale was cycling an equivalent distance of Oxford to Guildford to raise funds for the charity.

This was my first attempt at organising an event at a regional level and, most importantly, at cycling for the first time! I really appreciate the true giving spirit of my colleagues who enthusiastically supported us in every endeavour, making it a huge success.

Looking back now, I feel extremely satisfied. Not only did I engage with my community but I developed on a personal level. I initiated events, involved people, stepped out of my comfort zone and became more confident at getting things done.  And the icing on the cake was the happiness I got from the thought of being able to put a smile on someone’s face through my contribution.