The Experience After Emory: Sally Mundell

Sally Mundell (00C) is the founder of The Packaged Good, a nonprofit aimed at encouraging kids to give back while creating care packages. The care packages are assembled by children, families and groups at the Packaged Good store, located in Dunwoody, Ga, and then sent out to various non profit community partners, such as Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta and Rainbow Village Inc. The packages include anything from toiletries to school supplies. Inspired to give back after the passing of her husband in 2013, Mundell opened The Packaged Good this July. The company has produced over 5,000 care packages and worked with over 700 children. The Wheel spoke with Mundell about her experience at Emory, where she was an economics major, and the process of creating a nonprofit.

We, as human beings, receive a lot just from giving. It feels good to give. When we’re too busy to give … we’re actually doing ourselves a disservice, because not only are we not helping other people but we’re not healing ourselves — and everybody could use some type of healing.

A lot of the parents around me were having birthday parties for their children but they were adding a charity component. I thought that [was] great, but that [was] one time a year. Wouldn’t that be fantastic if it was something … ongoing? Let’s do something where, as a family, we can give together.

There really is no right answer. It’s about finding your individual way and enjoying the ride. When you hit that level of success but keep pushing yourself to the next level, you’re not enjoying it along the way. It’s important to enjoy what you’re doing to get to that success.

The nice thing about coming out of school is you don’t have any fear of making mistakes. You’re learning, figuring things out and you have low expenses. So, it’s a good time to try some of these things and explore.

It’s interesting because if you look back, everything’s led to where I am and why I can do what I’m doing, but at the time it feels disjointed.

I’m a problem solver, and I like to figure things out. Everything was something that hadn’t been figured out yet.

[Networking] is nice because you have your assortment of people who’re good at all these different things, and it makes you so much stronger and you’re able to do so much more. You don’t have to be the expert in everything, you just need to know who to put around you.

You can’t expect anything from networking. A lot of people think of networking as transactional, and it’s not tit for tat. You might develop a relationship over many years and then at that point you need their help with something. You might not know when that’s going to be, but you just have to know it will happen.

There [are] not failures, there [are] learnings. When I was young, I was so scared to fail, and it all is good at the end of the day. If you’re so scared — “Did I pick the right major?”  “Am I picking the first job right?” “Is this the right career path?” — know that nowadays it’s all over the place. There is no one career path that you’re going to stay in for 60 years. You’ll move all over the place and it’s OK. That’s how you learn. You’re going to make mistakes, and that’s how you learn. So keep trying things.