Stepping Up and Out for a Walk Around the World
When I went through the grueling process of interviewing for my CMO position at Avaya, what appealed to me most was the company’s strong sense of community. This was an organization going through a massive transformation. Leaders and employees were dealing with a ton of change and a lot of uncertainty. Yet last year, during the month of July (the dead of summer in some parts of the world), this global team came together and rallied around the company’s first-ever Month of Giving Program. Over the course of 31 days, 60 teams across 32 locations raised more than $250,000, and donated hundreds of volunteer hours to non-profits around the world. Absolutely fantastic! It told me everything I needed to know about the people at Avaya and their outstanding compassion, commitment, resilience and sense of spirit, camaraderie and mojo!
When the company decided to do it again—this time in October—my team and I came together to figure out how we could champion it. After all, we’re marketers! We have to lead by example.
Boy Did My Team Deliver
They came up with “Walk Around the World”—a month-long activity in which our team will walk 25,000 miles, the distance it takes to circle the globe. To up the engagement factor, the team partnered with the brilliantly creative Lightning Jar to design a mile tracking app, which we’ll use throughout the event. It’s compatible with both iOS and Android, and has a built-in pedometer so every step or mile we take is recorded. It also features a leaderboard so we can engage in spirited competitions, and increase the miles we’re walking and the money we’re raising.
Key to every philanthropic activity is the fundraising element. For that, we’re partnering with Save the Children, and will raise approximately $31,000 for their “Classroom Though Communities” initiative. What’s really cool about this tie-in with Save the Children is that every dollar donated will go directly towards the construction of a school in Mozambique, Africa, one of the poorest communities in the world. As the school is being built, the organization will send us photos of its construction, and then of the children basking in the delight of their new classroom.
Education is something about which I’m really passionate. A recent UNICEF report noted that on average, each additional year of education a child receives increases their adult earnings by about 10%. It also said for each additional year of schooling completed on average by young adults, a nation’s poverty rate drops 9%. These are stats we simply can’t ignore. As my colleague Amy Fliegelman Olli recently blogged, when you’re in the position to help, you must.
So my team is prepared to do their part. And if that weren’t remarkable enough, several friends are walking alongside us. Three cheers to our Avaya Law Team, led by the incomparable Amy Fliegelman Olli, Avaya HR, our customer Plantronics (who has the best headsets, by the way—talk about a superior #CX) and to our partners who are with us every step of the way (now literally!): Campaign Stars, Engagio (who published a wonderful blog about our event), Lightning Jar, Revana and Telefonix. We couldn’t do it without you!
Here’s to a successful Walk Around the World. Now let’s get moving. #10KaDay #ProudtobeAvaya