Taking the Code on the Road
The Creative Way comes alive in our Nigeria-based projects
May 29, 2019
Ethics and business conduct do not have to be boring. Indeed, they can be artistic. Just ask the field staff based in Abuja, Nigeria.
With the release of The Creative Way, Creative Associates International’s new code of ethics and business conduct, HQ’s Ethics & Compliance Department looked for an innovative method to introduce what some may say is a dry topic.
Director of Ethics and Compliance Joe Kale and Compliance Associate Heemani Rayamajhi hit on an idea: Let’s invite the staff to develop their interpretations of key sections of the code of ethics and business conduct.
With a field trip scheduled for Nigeria, Kale and Rayamajhi felt it would be appropriate to capture the spirit, energy and creativity of the local staff.
Calling it “Ethical Art-You Play the Part,” they turned it into a contest in which each project based in Nigeria was asked to submit their best entry.
“Employees could voluntarily participate and create a piece of art around something that resonated with them in the new code,” Kale said. “It could be a picture, photo, painting, video etc. Nine entries were received representing all the projects, and the quality was outstanding.”
The deadline was set for early May, which coincided with a planned trip by Creative’s General Counsel Larry Grayer and Kale traveled to Abuja on May 4 to 9.
A total of nine entries were submitted, ranging from artwork to a play, with the USAID-funded NEI Plus accounting for the largest number of submissions.
“The contest, held on the last day, was the highlight of the week in Abuja,” says Grayer.
Held at NEI Plus’s garden, approximately 75 employees attended the event and each entry was presented by the respective project to a panel of judges, which included Grayer and Kale. The top three entries selected were:
First place: “Rap Ethics Video,” submitted by NEI Plus. Watch the video below!
Second place: “Do the Right Thing,” a stage play led by Jennifer Onyejekwe of the Nigeria Lake Chad Basin project.
Third place: “Ubuntu Art,” submitted by USAID West Africa REWARD program.
Company–related prizes were awarded to the top three entries.
“There was a tremendous spirit of common purpose, a shared set of values and a great sense of comradery,” says Grayer.
Kale was equally enthusiastic about the event: “It was so rewarding to see all our colleagues engaged as one Creative team bonded by a shared set of values.”
Many colleagues mentioned that it was the first time in a couple years that there was a cross-program event and it made them feel like one Creative team.
“It was a wonderful week and opportunity to help build relationships with our colleagues in the field,” Kale says. “We are so appreciative of the warm welcome, gracious hospitality and active engagement our Nigeria team gave to us!”