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What Makes Me Come to Work Every Day

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Note from the editor: It can be tough to find your focus on Fridays/at the end of the week, but this post from Marques, who you may remember from a brief stint on this blog during his second rotation, made me think about why I come into work. Marques Camp is an internal communications manager and corporate ambassador on in Intel’s Employee Communications organization. In his role he is responsible for educating Intel employees about corporate strategy and direction, and inspiring them to fulfill Intel’s company vision of connecting and enriching the lives of every person on earth. Yup, he definitely has a cool job--but so does everyone else. And at it's core, I think we can all have our own burning reason for coming to work everyday. 
It’s not about the chip.

chip_1.jpgIf it was, I’d have no idea what to say. I studied philosophy, not engineering. Before I began working at Intel nearly two years ago, I could barely tell the difference between CPUs and GPUs and chipsets and platforms and gigahertz and megahertz.
It’s not about the devices. chip_2.jpg

If it was, then my friends and family would look at me with sarcastic glances. Yes, they would tell me, your Ultrabooks look really cool, but aren’t they just slimmer laptops? And wait, what about MacBook Airs? And where are all these smartphones and tablets with Intel Inside that you keep telling me about?
It’s not about the brand.chip_3.jpg

If it was, then I could work at Coca-Cola* or BMW* or Red Bull* or McDonald’s* or WalMart* and not notice much of a difference. People know who we are. We make a lot of money. People love our brand. Our brand is among the world’s valuable. But that is not why I evangelize about Intel.

It’s about our stories.

Like the story of Bonnie , a former director in Intel’s Digital Health Group now at Intel-GE Care Innovations, who drove over 500 miles from Loomis, CA to the Yucca Valley to hand-deliver an Intel Reader to an 86-year old family friend suffering from macular generation free of charge – all made possible because of DHeG’s commitment to ‘pay it forward’.

Like the story of marketing manager Yoshie, who in a time of crisis following Japan’s tsunamis rallied together an Intel team to connect refugees with their loved ones through WiMax-connected Classmate PCs.

Like the story of Angie , a formerly frustrated, worn-out, ready-to-quit teacher in Arizona whose work and life were revitalized through the Intel Teach program and the power of technology-infused learning – and who Intel later recognized as one of the 20 most inspiring educators in the US.

Like the story of our dear friend will.i.am, who is globetrotting around the world, helping to change the way we experience music.

These are not my stories. I did not personally live them. But actually, they are my stories, in the sense that they are weaved together as one larger Intel story – of connecting and enriching lives,  of creating meaningful technological experiences, and  of enabling a better future through these experiences. It’s not about what they do, or what I do. It’s about what we do.

It’s about the fact that I don’t have to make promises about what Intel plans to do or wants to do – it’s about what we have already done. Yes, it’s about connecting and enriching the lives of people we’ve yet to reach, but it’s also about the lives of people we already have.

I am extremely fortunate in that it is literally in my job description to be an Intel ambassador and tell stories – to help educate and inspire our employees, to help them understand why it is that we do what we do – changing the world through our technology. But the privilege does not rest with me – whether one is an engineer, or marketer, a manufacturing technician, IT analyst – we are all here for the same reason. And we can all tell these stories. We can all claim ownership.

And it is not because we want to build better-performing products than our competitors, or raise our stock price, or create the next popular ‘it’ gadget. That stuff is nice, but don’t answer the question of ‘why’.

Why do I get up every morning to come to Intel? Bonnie is why. Yoshi is why. Angieis why. Will.i.am is why. I come to work because I am excited to hear about and pass on the stories of how we take one simple element – silicon – and we change the course of lives, and of history.

Being an ambassador and advocate is simple. It’s about storytelling. It’s about pride. It’s about the sense of accomplishment you feel when you sit back and reflect on all the brilliant work your colleagues have done – the great work done long before you arrived and the great work that will continue long after you’ve departed.
It’s about reflecting on your time at Intel long after you retire, passing down stories to your children and grandchildren and great-grandchildren: “This is how we changed the world. And this was why we changed the world.” And that, is why I come to work everyday. Why do you?

* Other names and brands may be claimed as the property of others.