Last week – hurry up

3 weeks went pass like nothing. We are now all eager to deliver meaningful documentation and recommendations to our NGO partners.

In addtion, internal material has to be prepared and deliverd by end of the week for future reference and documentation of our success.

Well, this was a short blog, but focus is on the above mentioned 😉

IBM CSC USA1 @Chicago : 3rd Week is Over!

It seems as if we landed in Chicago only yesterday! The fact, however, is that CSC assignment USA1 is entering into its final week tomorrow. 3 weeks gone in a jiffy? It appears so…yes; but actually not…A substantial ground has been covered towards accomplishing the goals of the assignment; lot of interactions have taken place with both the IBMers who traveled from 12 different countries to participate in this CSC USA1 assignment and the sponsors / stakeholders of the 5 non profits; good knowledge and skills have been exchanged, and not to forget that memorable moments have been collected that will be cherished for a lifetime…

As we brace up for the final week of the assignment, we are working to ensure that all the hard work of these 3 weeks is consolidated and delivered impact fully, so that we can enjoy the satisfaction of a meaningful contribution to the cause of our non profits…

I am sure that all our sub teams are making the best of this wonderful time and the opportunity and have a lot to learn both professionally and personally from this life changing experience…AscThxw3TD2xzhFdLTvScA.jpg


RainReady is a premier program serving the needs and aspirations of lower income group communities in the space of urban flooding and storm water management. Rainready itself is an initiative of a 48 year old non profit organization : Center for Neighborhood Technology (CNT).

As part of its Corporate Service Corps program, IBM has assigned 3 of its employees (Hossam, Samrit and Sushil) for contributing 4 weeks of our time as volunteers, to observe and understand this community challenge and provide help in scaling up RainReady outreach and offerings.

Over the last 3 weeks, we went through the documentation about the organization, interviewed with more than 10 stakeholders from Rainready and CNT; had site visits and held remote calls with community members. We also attended monthly meeting of the host organization and had some brain storming and design thinking sessions among ourselves to understand the overall context and analyze various scale up options for RainReady. We also had a discussion on our preliminary findings with the key CNT staff and a 1-0-1 with the new CEO, Robert Dean.

With these critical activities having been completed, it will be now time to consolidate and build upon the final set of recommendations for RainReady and CNT in the upcoming 4th and last week of our CSC assignment.

We are looking forward to it and are sanguine that our efforts will really prove to be useful for both RainReady and CNT in scaling up their capabilities to serve the communities better!

Catching a cold but still feel warm

Chicago is called Wind City and it’s so cool even in summer. Even we prepared a lot but I got a cold for whatever reason. Maybe the air condition is heavily used and the office is really freezing, maybe because of the lovely rain when walking btw office and hotel, I don’t know but anyway I got cold since last beach cleaning and cough seriously day and night.

I hate to cough, because it really disturb others during work. I feels very embarrassed. But I don’t want to impact the working progress. We are in closing phase.

This happened to me before but I just hate to have this during my CSC.

So I. Took one day off on Thursday working from the hotel. I didn’t get better on Friday.

Last evening, In the elevator I met Karla who is from Mexico. She saw my coughing. Later in whatup, she asked me if I need any tea or medicine. I really don’t want to take medicine, but Canela tea? Never heard of it. However I want to have a try. It really too bad to keep coughing all the time.

But it’s 10pm already, I don’t think it’s safe for Karla to go to the groceries at this late.

She insisted, saying if I can have that tea before sleep, it’s good for me.

I’m really moved.

What can I say more. We are known each other for 4 months, only see each other for 3 weeks, but I feel we are close friend like a family.

Thanks Karla! I felt much better this morning. In fact, last night i made a whole night sleeping, which is the first time during the past week. I will have more rest on this weekend to recover soon.

Also thanks Hossam to be the safeguard!!

Design Thinking Workshop

A highlight for CSC experience as I’m facilitating one group in Design Thinking Workshop. A fun day! It’s a 6 hours training but everyone felt time just flew by.

Coz during preparation the client was really worrying 6-hour is too long. But at the end of today, they admit this is really a mini size DT. And it’s so worthy of doing it.


Thanks for Ebru’s brilliant leading to make this happen! Also thanks for Elvira and Thorsten for smart team work!