At 9:45pm last night, I was seated at my desk working on a presentation when I heard a shout of laughter echo down the nearby hallway. It’s not often that you’d expect to hear such a happy noise at such a late hour, and yet there seemed to be an endless buzz of excitement and friendly chatter in the office until I left almost an hour later.
The level of high energy despite the time was not arbitrary: Silver Spring employees were working towards wrapping up the first day of Creating Change, an annual pro bono initiative that connects local nonprofit organizations with Discovery’s creative workforce for a two-day marathon event. Employee teams had been working since 10am that morning on a variety of deliverables, and with limited hours left before they needed to present their final ideas the following day, everyone was working hard to finish in time.
It was with that same gusto that employee teams launched into the second day of Creating Change this morning. My group in particular focused on the creative design and marketing for a new initiative our nonprofit had just launched. Among the deliverables were a new logo, business cards and graphics for the webpage, newsletter and social media. We also worked on finalizing an email signature, and presented some ideas on how the creative could be incorporated into a larger campaign – from guerilla marketing tactics to community events. At 11am this morning, we were finally able to share with our organization what we had developed and hand off the deliverables for them to implement.
It was a happy exchange that seemed like it was weeks in the making, not hours, and it was a reminder that it doesn’t take a lot of vested time in a project for you to fully realize the impact that you can have.
As a first time participant in the marathon event, I was genuinely thrilled to have been involved. I had heard about Creating Change on my first day at Discovery – only five weeks ago – while being introduced to a colleague who, as it was explained to me, was working hard towards finalizing plans for the initiative. I chose to participate for two reasons: I wanted to be able to lend my skills to a local organization, and I was curious to see how such a large company would lend itself to projects that spanned industries inherently different from Discovery’s own. The end result was equally rewarding as it was relieving – that any company, despite its size, can positively affect change, and that a new company I have only recently joined and begun to know as my own has a heart that can warm any community.
Visit www.discovery.com/ourimpact to see what employee and organization participants said during the event.