Reflections On NDI From A Senior Program Officer In Technology & Innovation

Reflections On NDI From A Senior Program Officer In Technology & Innovation

I started in with the NDItech team as a Senior Program Officer in early Feb 2016, post DC blizzard. Coming into a large DC based NGO I did not know quite what to expect, but I was very warmly welcomed and right away felt like I was a part of the family. On the tech team from day one, I experienced an environment full of creativity and innovation. NDItech serves as a technology and innovation think tank for the larger organization, and as such not one day is quite like the next. It’s a high energy place, ideas are always brewing, and you’re constantly provided opportunities to participate in a lot of really exciting and challenging projects.

Personally, I come from a mixed professional background in development, business, technology and biology, so the world of democracy and governance was a bit new to me. It took some time to adapt to the culture and speed in which the organization flows. With so many partners around the world and being in a field so sensitive to emerging global political and economic trends, our organization has become very fluid and able to rapidly respond to fluctuating global events.

The complexity and depth of the type of work we do is represented well in the ubiquity of abbreviations floating around our office. We have abbreviations for proposals, proposal types, processes, tools, governments, offices, teams, departments, and events. I’m sure I’ve left off a few items there, but you get the gist. It takes about three months to really to get a hold of what all of these abbreviations stand for and how all of these complex flows of information are intersecting to create real change on a global level.

Lastly, I have to mention that the most awesome aspect of working at NDI is that you get to spend a lot of time with really smart, interesting and inspired people. I have never worked at an office where I have met so many incredibly talented, overachieving do-gooders in the world, it has been an absolute pleasure to have spent time with these very fine people. My overall experience at NDI has been incredibly positive, I have learned so much in such a short of period of time. I am both humbled and honored to have had the privilege of working amongst the NDI community, people who will continue to do great things in this world.