Avaya 2018 Month of Giving: Giving Back Makes a Company Stronger

Avaya 2018 Month of Giving: Giving Back Makes a Company Stronger

When you go on a job interview, you—as the candidate—are interviewing the company as much as the company is interviewing you. My decision to join Avaya came down to culture. I wanted to be a part of a strong community and to work for a company that cared as much about social responsibility as I did. Avaya hit these marks. Here’s why.

Avaya is a company that experienced a great deal of change over the past five years (you can read more about our growth and transformation here). Yet, they never lost their mojo, and never lost the commitment to a strong and positive company culture. Case in point: Avaya’s annual Month of Giving program—one full month of volunteering and fundraising across the company.

Launched for the first time in July 2015, this program’s success relied 100% on employee participation, and the results were extraordinary. Over the course of those 31 days, 60 teams across 32 locations raised more than $250,000 and donated hundreds of volunteer hours to non-profits around the world. It became an annual program, moved to October and since 2015, the Avaya team has raised close to $1M for non-profit charities around the globe. This program’s success told me everything I needed to know about the people of Avaya. I couldn’t wait to become part of their community.

This October marks my first Month of Giving, so my team and I knew we had to go big. After all, it’s what Marketing does best, right?

Get Fit. Give Back.

We’re calling our Month of Giving activity Get Fit. Give Back., and together we’re aiming to log 25M steps while raising $35K for our chosen charity partner, Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF). MSF is one of those truly remarkable organizations that only makes headlines when they’re really, really needed (think earthquake, tsunami, or war). But the MSF team is constantly delivering humanitarian aid projects—from disaster response to long-term medical programs—which often stretch out over decades. They are seeing millions of patients every year whether it hits your news feed or not. That’s why it’s important for people like you and me to help extend their global reach, and Avaya is proud to have this opportunity to partner with them. (You can watch a brief video here to learn more about their organization).

To bring this activity to life, we brought in Charity Footprints, a company that provides a unique, off-the-shelf solution combining fitness and gamification to make fundraising engaging for participants and donors. It has both a web and app interface and will be compatible with the top four wearable devices, as well as the iOS and Android health apps. This will ensure that every step we take is recorded seamlessly.

The solution integrates with LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter, making it easy to solicit donations from our friends, family, colleagues and professional networks. It features a leaderboard so we can engage in spirited competitions all month long to increase fitness and fundraising efforts, as well as a traversing virtual world map that shows how far we’re moving as a global team. For this activity, our virtual race has us starting out of our Morristown office and walking to our other seven U.S. campuses. From there, we head to Dubai to meet up with our head of International Sales, Nidal Abou-Ltaif, and then we finish up in our India offices. How cool is that?

My team and I are excited to do our part for our annual Month of Giving. Keep in mind that when we initially thought about our goals, the biggest consideration was the small size of our Marketing team. Unbeknownst to us at the time was how many leaders outside of Marketing would volunteer to join us. My colleagues Nidal Abou-Ltaif, Kevin Cornwall, Dino Di Palma, Tara Dunning, Chris McGugan, Ed Nalbadian, Shefali Shah, Greg Pelton, and Jean Turgeon have all stepped up to champion Get Fit.Give Back. with their teams and I couldn’t be more thrilled to have them on board (though, something tells me we need to revisit our goals!)

The best part about this activity is that anyone can register to get fit and give back. It is neither limited to Marketing nor Avaya. To this end, I’ll leave you with one important question: are you ready to step up with us? #Steptober #GetFitGiveBack

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