Flywheel Project: The First Turn

If you’ve come around Black Lab Sports in the last two weeks, you might have noticed a changed dynamic. In addition to bringing in some new long-term tenants, we’ve gained nearly a dozen young additions to our space for the summer that we're really excited about!

The first cohort of Flywheel Project—our three-month experiential learning and leadership program for high school and college students—is under way and on a roll. Hailing from Seattle to New York, and spanning academic interests from communications to accounting, they’ve already amplified energy levels in The Lab and gotten their feet wet in a number of areas, both here and beyond. Before they get much further into the program, I want to share some of the things these emerging leaders have been up to so far.

 

Orientation: As individuals, they considered the unique strengths and weaknesses they’d be bringing to the program. As a group, they began to break down barriers and establish goals for the summer ahead.

 

A Day with Will Day: For their first team activity, the interns helped Will Day publicize his upcoming art show in San Francisco. Opting for the cold-call method, they reached out to hotels, yacht clubs, country clubs, and luxury condos and emailed art blogs in order to spread the word and distribute invitations. Later, they got a lesson in painting from the man himself. (Verdict: Impressed) 

 

Distribution Experience: Following the lead of isplack’s co-founder Aaron Beach, Flywheel Project learned the ins and outs of quality assurance and 3PL. Plowing through two massive crates, they opened boxes, counted isplack sticks (yanking the errors), repackaged the boxes, and got them ready to ship out, devising an efficient system and growing a team as they went. 

 

isplack Activation: Commerce City, Colorado hosted the USA-Trinidad & Tobago men’s soccer match last week—a World Cup Qualifier—and gave Flywheel Project members their first taste in street activation. For a full afternoon, they helped fans get their colors on with Fire Red, Flash White, and True Blue isplack streaks, while squeezing in a little tailgating too. An estimated 5-600 faces colored and a victorious Team USA sounds like a success to me. 

 

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HogFest: In perhaps the coolest “work” assignment of the summer, a handful of interns attended local apparel startup Shinesty's HogFest over the weekend. Putting that trifecta of isplack sticks to use again, they color-coordinated with Shinesty’s ‘Merica Collection to infuse the event with a humongous dose of patriotism and pride.  

 

In their first full two weeks, Flywheel Project members set the tone for their turn and for future Flywheel cohorts. Eagerly accepting every challenge thrown their way and coming together as a team to get things done, they’re racking up experiences and skills that we believe will help them go far in the real world. We’re really excited about the 11 individuals we hand-picked (out of 40+ applicants), and we expect big things from them this summer and beyond.

Big props to the Flywheel Project team (Connor, Henry, Hunter, Jake, Kirby, Michael, Mike, Nick, Roy, Sophia and Suzie), Flywheel Project Executive Director Zach Murphy, and isplack Evangelist/Photographer Cooper Nelson!