Looking back at 2019 and closing out the decade, Projectline had a year full of growth, new team members, community building, and gratitude for our clients and partners. We are reflecting on how we have brought our values to our work and the ever-expanding community around us. As a team we’ve deepened our commitment to driving the Future of Work and honoring the vision of our founders to uphold a mission that aims to positively impact the people we work with, the people we work for, and the communities we live in.
One area that our little 10-person team is most proud of is our commitment to life-long learning for ourselves and our teams. It is one of our core values after all! We expanded our monthly consultant training including guest speakers on essential topics such as: automation, personal brand, blockchain, women in leadership, future of work, and design thinking. We took classes such as “Reconciliation: Building Allyship Between Black Men and White Men,” “Diversity, Racial Equity, and Inclusion Model (DREIM),” and “Train the Trainer: Strategies for Facilitating Conversations on Race.” We attended evening workshops like “Religion in the Workplace,” “Accessibility: Inclusiveness beyond Policy into Practice,” and “More than M and F: Supporting Transgender People in the Workplace .” GM and management expert, Damian Hoffman, and Maine based, Senior Manager, Gino Desruisseaux attended the 2019 Responsive conference and brought back critical learnings about the Future of Work, through experiential learning, and critical discussions around actionable organizational change. Anika Lehde, our fearless leader, completed the Women Board Directors Development Program this summer at the Foster School of Business. Njeri Thande, our super brilliant Business & Operations Analyst, graduated with her master’s from the Evans School of Public Policy and Governance. Newer managers Jenifer Joyce and Talya Esserman both became Certified Professional Career Coaches and last but not least, our Marketing Manager, Ashley Marquez, finished her certification in Diversity and Inclusion from Cornell!
Another area of excitement for us in 2019 were all the communities we joined, supported, and activated with locally and nationally. We attended as many Future for Us events as our schedules allowed and volunteered whenever possible – our support for their incredible work is unwavering. Manager, Jacob Uwah attended AfroTech and wrote about his experience in this extraordinary community here. Projectline leaders were also at Equal Pay Day events, Hacking HR events in Seattle and Portland, the Women in Leadership Symposium, the LGBTQ+ Roundtable, Be Bold Seattle, Social Impact Happy Hours, Women on Boards 20/20 luncheon, Civic Commons dinner, and more. Jacob and Ashley also were on the board of the Pacific NW Diversity council. We are even more excited to see how these communities continue to grow and evolve in 2020!
2019 also brought our Mindfulness program at Projectline into full relief. Sophie Solomon our resident professional development and mindfulness maven along with key consultant leaders, Emily and Christy, led monthly mindfulness practice discussions – fully remote – for all employees interested in using mindfulness meditation to be our best selves at work, with our teams, and at home. We combined this with our dedication to inclusion to center many of these mindfulness conversations on diversity and equity practices. We even start each monthly consultant community meeting with a few minutes of breathing and mindfulness to bring us into focus and reduce distraction. This is a routine we will undoubtedly bring with us into 2020.
One of our goals is to help shape the Future of Work by being influential, which also means being visible. This year Lauren Bell brought her passion for parenthood in the workplace, founding an employee resource group (ERG) that supports the success of parents in our organization and then speaking on that topic at emERGe a national ERG conference put on by Diversity Best Practices. Anika also spoke on a panel for Latina’s Equal Pay Day and was on a panel about allyship at the Future for Us Assembly in April. Ashley Marquez spoke on a panel for the Puget Sound American Marketing Association (AMA) on diversity and marketing – both the content and the profession. And we published more than 35 written pieces on topics from remote work, to inclusion, to the talent gap and beyond on our Insights page.
We also launched some new areas of focus in 2019. Managers Talya Esserman and Jacob Uwah brought a commitment to veterans and their spouses transitioning to the workforce, partnering with Work of Honor and Redefining You Foundation, and publishing important content just for this audience. Jen Joyce, a new senior manager on our team mentioned above, is using her passions to support the breakdown of ableism and ageism in the workplace have broadened the depth of our diversity and inclusion practices and knowledge.
One major change to our team as we leave 2019 behind: Njeri Thande will be leaving us to focus on a more public policy career path. (Fun fact: In 2019 Njeri worked an entire summer from Kenya with zero interruptions to our work or the function of the team!) Njeri hands off the baton to our newest team member, Moni Kim, who brings critical support to the business with expertise in recruiting and administrative work.
This year, we are dreaming big and already hard at work to make a positive impact in every way possible, for all in our community. Cheers to a great year ahead!