Clever people + awesomeness + explosive ideas + glitter*

Written by
Marcella Tarable

+ great food + brain cells + meditation* + networking + contagious energy + dancing* + drinks = hack days with the power to change the world.

Scratch that itch

We are lucky enough to work in an industry where creative ideas are (or should be) at the core of what we do. Whether you’re a creative, strategist, designer or account person, the aim for the whole team is creating work we are all proud of.

But do you ever get the itch that our creative ways of thinking could be used for something that might change the world, even just a little bit? That’s what the best hack days are all about.

Sounds interesting, tell me more

People with different skills get together to creatively solve one or more problems of a social venture. You’re divided into different groups to tackle the briefs in 24, 48 or 72 hours. Depending on the venture, the budget available and the challenge; the outcome can vary: a communication campaign, a new product innovation, a social movement or even a time travel machine... why not?

The vibe at these hack days is incredbile. Imagine a group of 50 or more people who meet off their own will, usually on a weekend, to make a real difference in the world. It’s heart-pumping, mind-blowing, and energy-generating at the same time.

You take as much as you give. In exchange of donating your skills and time, you get to know incredible people and learn new ways of working that you can use in your day-to-day. The best bit of all? Feeling part of something incredible that has the power to change the world.

I’ve been lucky enough to participate in hack days for the UN – to help promote their Global Goals, and the National Trust – to connect people with nature. I even managed to be in the same room as the people who replaced Clapham Common station with pictures of cats (#catsnotads).

 So yeah...that happened.

Join in

If donating some £ to Greenpeace isn’t enough to put your conscience at rest, here are a few cool groups and projects you can join:

  • Good for Nothing are diverse groups of people working in new, faster, more fun and better ways. They support ideas and people leading the way to what a flourishing 21st century might look like. They solve stuff through creative think-hack-do gigs.
  • Glimpse aims to make positive social change feel attractive to millions more people. Instead of focusing on the problem, they show ‘glimpses’ of a better world that’s possible. You might remember the #catsnotads campaign mentioned above! I am working with the guys on some exciting new projects. You should definitely sign up and get involved! 
  • And if you are into something a little bit different, follow Craftivist and attend small gatherings where you can use your craft skills to create beautiful activists signs while speaking to like-minded people about global issues and come up with new projects together.

One final note

*Dancing, meditation and glitter aren’t available at all events, but were omni-present at the event I organised with my friend Matt, kindly sponsored by Poke & Publicis. We raved at 8am in the morning before getting to work. You can see the rest of it here: 

Rave your way into Good for Nothing from Good for Nothing on Vimeo.