Adjusting to a New Way of Work – Detroit Community-Engaged Research Program

Adjusting to a New Way of Work

The culture at FoodLab is one that is defined by community. The staff and members at FoodLab are very close and refer to each other as family. Everything done at this organization is not done without the input and consideration of the Detroit community. Because of this, a kind of culture in which there is zero judgement but also no lack of accountability where it is due, is one that has developed at FoodLab. Working directly with community members of Detroit has taught me that the Detroit community as a whole is not much different. At least for those who also happen to be entrepreneurs in the city. Within the program, the entrepreneurs have also formed close-knit relationships with one another that have in turn strengthened the development of their businesses. It has been so rewarding to witness just how significant the culture of community has been while working with FoodLab.

While unfortunately it has been difficult to read cultural cues while attending zoom meetings rather than in-person ones, some other cues that i have been aware of is the sense of responsibility the organization expects from its interns. While i am of course free to ask any clarifying questions and about any new projects, advice, etc., I am also given free will to create my own project to propose to my supervisor. It is something that is different from other projects I have worked on and organization I have interned with, but it is a great opportunity and so far has been very rewarding!

1 thought on “Adjusting to a New Way of Work”

  1. Hi Torisa!

    I really resonated with your post, I think that one of the greatest things about nonprofit organizations is that they are so community-oriented. My site also has strong ties to other organizations and nonprofits in their area, and they’re all working together to improve their community. I’ve also found picking up cultural cues to be difficult given that all of our interaction is virtual, but the overall vibe is easy enough to understand, if that makes sense.

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