West Monroe Partners believes our success ultimately depends on the health and vitality of the people, communities, resources, and environment around us, and we make it a point to judge our success not just by the dollars we earn but by the positive impact we have through our actions as individuals and through the way we do business.
As a part of this commitment, every year West Monroe Partner’s West Coast offices come together to participate in a volunteer project the morning of our third quarter meeting. This volunteer effort also serves as a team building activity that brings our employees in Los Angeles and Seattle together for some hard work and camaraderie.
This year, our meeting also happened to fall on the National Day of Service and Remembrance, a day when Americans unite in service as a way to honor those who were impacted by the events of September 11, 2001. Knowing we were taking time from our busy work days to give back to our community on a day when others across the country were doing the same made this year’s project extra meaningful.
As in years past, we collaborated with the Student Conservation Association (SCA) to work in one of Seattle’s many incredible parks. SCA’s mission is to build the next generation of conservation leaders and inspire lifelong stewardship of the environment and communities by engaging young people in hands-on service to the land. West Monroe Partners has been an enthusiastic supporter of SCA for nearly 10 years. Dean Fischer served as an SCA board member from 2006-2014 and recruited me to join the board in 2014 to continue the firm’s commitment to developing young leaders and bettering the communities our employees and clients work and live in.
West Monroe’s values of “people first” and personal and professional development align well with the SCA’s focus on developing the next generation of conservation leaders. I find it incredibly inspiring to witness these students grow as leaders and turn their passion for the environment into results.
This year, fifty West Monroe employees were put to work restoring part of the Hidden Valley Trail at Discovery Park, a heavily used trail on a hillside that has been damaged by erosion. Discovery Park is Seattle’s largest park and one of its most ecologically diverse, with more than seven miles of trails that need constant maintenance. We were warned that the projects would involve a lot of hard work and heaving lifting, and they weren’t joking!
Our employees engaged in a number of trail restoration projects, from installing huge, 300 lb concrete steps made from recycled curbing:
To building a culvert at a low point in the trail with logs, blue stone and gravel:
To regrading the path and clearing away or replanting overgrown brush:
We were working in large groups in confined spaces and with heavy, potentially dangerous tools and materials. By applying the same skills we bring to our client projects, such as communication, collaboration and a desire to succeed (along with a little patience and humor), we were able to complete all our projects in the allotted time, before convening for pizza and our quarterly meeting.
According to the SCA, these projects resulted in long-lasting, highly visible improvements to the trail that will have a positive impact on the park’s users for years to come. It is gratifying to know that our work will create a better experience for the many community members who use Discovery Park every day.