Planning for our community engagement sessions, however, started many weeks ago. We had paper, an easel, and markers…all we needed were the ideas. During our initial brainstorm, we were down two interns, leaving only Braden, Rowan, myself and our leader, Fred, to come up with ideas. Rowan wrote while Braden, Fred and I thought about strategy. To make planning easier, we created four focus areas: Our Goal, Survey Questions, Advertising, and In-Person Meeting with notes for each. It took us almost a whole day to get to this point of our planning process!
It made me realize that planning takes time and needs to be carefully thought out. Often, I assume that some things are simple to accomplish, but really so many details need to be considered and planned for. I also learned that using my voice is important and additive to the conversation at hand. I am learning that saying something is often better than not saying something, and it is helping me get over my fear of not having my ideas accepted or of being judged.
After we successfully created our rough draft, we decided to take a mini break. I thought it would be fun to draw each other and liven things up. Rowan and I grabbed some markers and started drawing each other while Fred and Braden watched. I wasn’t sure if they were impressed by our work or confused that we were actually serious about drawing each other. Either way, it was fun, but Braden and Fred needed to be involved in some way…so we drew them!
I drew Fred and Rowan drew Braden. My version of Fred was a cartoon-style, fancy McDonalds worker; and Rowan chose to draw Braden as an anime model with strong jaw lines. It was hilarious. Having moments like this is important because it builds team relationships. It taught me that it’s ok to laugh enjoy yourself while at work.
Work doesn’t need to be serious all the time and this experience of both brainstorming a plan and having a drawing session proved to be beneficial.As a team, we were able to develop a great layout for our ideas and a strategic game plan. To complement this productivity, we had a good time with each other and had lots of laughs. This experience helped me understand the importance of balancing work with fun and I will carry this wisdom with me for my future career.