Each year, we set aside some time where we can acknowledge important miles stones and have a little fun together, and last week, CCAH held our annual staff appreciation day.
Our Spirit Week did look a little different this year. Typically, we have a week of fun filled activities in our East Coast and West Coast offices. Traditionally we have a day of service on 9/11 here in the DMV, and we spend the day with AARP packing lunches for Seniors in need, and our West Coast office does a day of service with one of the awesome groups that we work with out there.
So, for the second year in a row, we found ways to show our appreciation Covid Style! Celebrating our employees with food, cheer, and an afternoon off on Friday so everyone could start their weekend early.
But, before we all left for the week, we took a moment to reflect on three key areas of our firm: Client Success, CCAH Internal Initiatives, and Exciting Company Growth.
First, the work of our clients … most of us are here at CCAH because we want to make a positive impact on the world—and we want our work to make a difference.
And since the pandemic shut down the world, the work that our employees do has proven even more important than ever.
In this past year and a half, Email, Direct Mail, and Mobile were the only form of communication with donors for many organizations. While the world was going to hell in a handbasket, our clients dove in head-first to help address the multitude of crises happening in 2020. As a matter of fact, some even posted their best fundraising year ever because of the work and commitment of their CCAH team. I am so proud of what we delivered. When we look back on this whole “Covid time” and think about what we did to make a difference—well, we get to answer:
I helped hospitals expand their services to meet the Covid Crisis …
I delivered PPE to thousands of people for our clients …
I helped people down on their luck get reintroduced to society and get a job and start a new life …
I helped raise the funds to open the doors of the International African American Museum …
I helped make sure that hundreds of thousands of voters had were educated on where and how to cast their ballot—despite a massive voter suppression effort …
And we even had the energy to help take back Congress, get rid of Trump, and elect the first biracial woman as Vice President in our nation’s history!
And I could go on. Every day you are helping these amazing organizations make someone’s life a little better … and that’s not something to take for granted, or something everyone can say they did. I am so honored to lead these dedicated people in making this difference.
CCAH Internal Initiatives
We have embraced becoming a more flexible workplace and trying to work with each of our employees on their personal needs to help balance work and life. After a few surveys and some informal focus groups, the management team has made a big push to meet our employees where they are.
We’ve expanded where we’re registered and now have employees in 14 different states, allowing staff to relocate and significantly expanding our hiring pool. We added additional vacation days to our schedule and increased the “supervisor discretion” time off over the summer. And at the beginning of this year each employee started receiving a monthly stipend for home office supplies.
But we all know, nothing really replaces the ability to have human interaction: whether at the office or your neighborhood coffee shop, people need a change of scenery and a real person to talk to from time to time.
And unfortunately, that’s something I can’t fix nor can I promise when it will change. But I can promise you that at CCAH, our Partners and Management spend a lot of time thinking about how we can help our employees, each and every one of them, navigate these new challenges. We know we may not get it right every time, and we are open to all ideas and suggestions for new ways to approach any issue, and we’ll never stop striving to make things better.
Exciting Company Growth
And finally, looking toward company growth and future. We have launched a number of new internal divisions in this past year or so.
For example, we launched the new Nonprofit Ads Department. And in January, when we had the unofficial launch of our CCAH Ads division, and within the first few months we were invited to participate in RFPs for five well-known nonprofits (after we had only been “live” for ~45 days!), introducing ourselves to at least 100 influential folks in the nonprofit space who were very impressed with what they saw. And that is how you start to build the business.
QCT data management has been another tremendous success. This outstanding team has been expanding our portfolio of data services. And they plan to continue to grow their team and bring in even more data management for the company.
And after Testing a Co-op model for Senate Candidates, our CCAH Political Team is delving into critical voter education and get-out-the-vote work and has built out two teams now focusing on this endeavor.
So not only are we doing great work for our clients, we’re expanding our services across the company and watching for trends that provide other new business opportunities.
As I look towards the future, there is nothing more valuable to our firm than our incredible employees. With new partner and management team voices, and a laser focus on challenges and opportunities in 2022, the company leadership is hard at work looking for answers to the tough questions, tackling challenges head-on, and staying on top of trends that put us ahead of our competition. To all of you, a huge thanks. The work we do is important, but it is this dedication to excellence that has kept us going strong for over 35 years.
The expectation of our company leadership is that we approach all challenges and opportunities with culture and values leading the way.
We must ensure that our company continues innovating, offering our employees the best skills training available and professional development opportunities inside and outside the company. And that we lean into our diversity, equity, and inclusion priorities — even and especially while we are remote. We need to look inward to see how to improve and make those changes outwardly as we continue to drive toward excellence in the industry.
But most importantly, as our staff appreciation week comes to a close, and we continue looking forward and reflecting on the year so far, I want to take a moment to tell our employees, from the bottom of my heart, thank you for all you do at CCAH.