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!nnovateFest delivers a fun approach to learning, innovation and culture building

  • Posted on May 19, 2022
  • Estimated reading time 2 minutes

Creating a positive and productive workplace experience is one of our main service areas and something that has been a big challenge for organizations who suddenly had to pivot their operations to respond to the global pandemic. As a member of Avanade Advisory, I am always looking for new inspiration, ideas and tools to help clients achieve their objectives.

Inspiration can come from outside or from within. Avanade’s !nnovateFest—first launched in 2020—is a powerful example of how a company can bring people together outside of their focused work and promote learning as well as a stronger, people-first culture.

For years, Avanade has cultivated innovation through events like our Innovation Contest, where teams from around the world got together to develop ideas and protypes for client-facing solutions. Winning teams earned a substantial cash prize and the ability to develop their ideas for use with clients. When Covid made the contest unworkable in its then current format, the innovation team created a concentrated virtual experience that asks our people to broaden their perspective on our business and spend just a few minutes a day learning about a topic that is top of mind for us as a company.

This year’s !nnovateFest is all about sustainability and how we at Avanade can bring sustainability considerations into our work. To me, that’s exciting because sustainability is more relevant than ever. Over 10 business days, all Avanade people have an opportunity to learn, grow and express our commitment to a sustainable future. One big lever of engagement is the quizzes and games that accompany each day’s activities. I absolutely love the gamification where you can earn points by completing activities, sharing, and more.

I don’t mean to brag, but I was the top point earner in my region during the first !nnovateFest two years ago. My competitive character was triggered, and I was motivated strongly to complete all activities with care, so I could answer the quiz questions after each activity to earn a great score.

I have the fortunate vantage point of advising clients on their workplace experience while enjoying an exemplary one of my own. !nnovateFest has given me ideas and proof points as to how to reinvigorate or strengthen your culture when you can’t come together. Clients who are looking for ways to do the same can learn from what we’re doing. !nnovateFest brings together our company values and strategy, brings some common learning to everyone in fast daily doses, and is underpinned by data to help us understand where our people find value.

To me it is the perfect example of Avanade’s commitment to innovation and the embodiment of growth mindset. It’s an opportunity for all of us to learn, grow and express our commitment to a sustainable future.

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