We are the Champions! Avanade Citizenship Champs drive human impact
- Posted on November 18, 2019
- Estimated reading time 2 minutes
Citizenship is in our DNA at Avanade. It is supported from the highest levels of our organization – by Pam Maynard, our CEO and executive sponsor of our Tech for Social Good program, by Stella Goulet, our CMO and chair of our Citizenship Council, and by our executive leads around the world, who lend their support and voice regularly to share news about our citizenship initiatives.
Our goal is to enable young people and their communities to do more through the power of our people and digital innovation. We have powerful stories to share about what they have accomplished, but we recognize we still have some way to go to ensure that all or most of our people are actively involved in our Citizenship program’s efforts. For that reason, we’ve recently added a volunteering metric to our executive scorecard, which our executive leadership uses to ensure Avanade hits various important milestones and is used to update our Board of Directors on a number of important initiatives that enable us to do good business while doing good for society.
Our goal is to see all our employees volunteer their time and expertise to do good. To facilitate that, each year every employee is given eight hours of paid time to volunteer to support a non-profit organization of his or her choice. This year, year one of our official volunteering metric, our target is for 30 percent of our employees to use their volunteering hours. It’s not that our people are not great at volunteering – they are just very humble about it and good at keeping it to themselves, rather than sharing it with their teams.
To realize this goal and grow our impact, we recently introduced a +1 role (stretch role) for any employee who would like to become a Citizenship Champ. For those less familiar with the term, a +1 role is exactly that. It is a role you commit to undertake, to the best of your ability, in addition to your day job. In return, we offer our Champs training, coaching and resources to help them achieve their Citizenship plans. It is an opportunity for our employees to drive social impact, connect with Avanade senior leaders and develop their leadership skills. We also believe that being involved in our Citizenship initiatives leads to a high level of employee satisfaction.
The initiatives our Citizenship Champs will manage will be many and varied, based on location, interest and relevance. For a start, they will engage more fully with Junior Achievement, our strategic partner, to prepare our future leaders and entrepreneurs for the digital era. This could mean arranging job shadowing opportunities or hosting a design thinking-led innovation camp, or it could mean aligning Avanade mentors with young people.
It also could mean supporting our Avanade STEM scholars through mentorships and internships, hosting roundtables with Avanade executives or hosting innovation workshops and office visits to help students learn about the latest digital innovations and emerging technologies or creating a platform for scholars to connect and collaborate across geographic boundaries. It could additionally mean arranging one of our many Transform with Avanade workshops, where we invite small and mid-sized nonprofits to a half-day workshop to discuss Microsoft technologies and brief them on digital innovations related to their work. For example, we recently ran a data visualization workshop in Seattle for local nonprofits, where participants could speak with our experts and then be partnered with one of our consultants to discuss their very own unique needs.
The opportunities are broad for our Champs, with many opportunities to make a difference. That’s why we encourage our people get involved, give back and volunteer to, as we say at Avanade, make a genuine human impact.