I have spent the last four months working as a Development Intern at Cahdco. The tight knit team has welcomed me with open arms, providing the opportunity to explore and expand my knowledge of affordable housing development.

 

My work term began with a steady introduction to the mechanics, methods, and history of development in North America. Understanding terminology and definitions early on informed my wholistic perspective and allowed me to onboard faster. One topic I found especially interesting was the definition of different levels of affordability.

Credit: CMHC

Expanding on terms and definitions, I then began exploring the business model and operations of Cahdco. Frameworks such as “the three-legged stool” broke development down into it’s first principles and served as a good start point for explaining how Cahdco delivers value.

Credit: Cahdco

Next, I was introduced to the range of business tools that Cahdco uses. Digging into the pro-forma template, document management system, and time tracking solutions allowed me to operate effectively and mange my expectations. Understanding the features and limitations of each process was vital when optimizing my workflow and prioritization of tasks.

 

After a few weeks, I finally found myself in a steady flow state. I was managing project timelines/deliverables, connecting with my colleagues, and exploring opportunities related to my specific role. The work/life balance was fantastic. Once the end of the day came, it was all about my own life. There was no expectation or culture of grinding out extra hours.

 

I had so many opportunities to learn and collaborate with teammates of much greater experience and knowledge. I found myself constantly curious and excited to learn, slowly picking up on the subtle skills and techniques required to make a good developer. One of the key values imparted on me is the importance of trust and relationships. All developments start with a group of people who are mission aligned and willing to work together. Having the skills to do so effectively was previously undervalued in my mind.

 

These past four months have flown by. Cahdco has taught me so much and I can’t wait so see how far it will continue to grow. I’ll look back fondly on the work, learning, and relationships created.

We are hiring volunteer board members!

Are you passionate about the City of Ottawa and affordable housing? Do you want to make a real impact in your community? Do you want to grow your professional development skills alongside a thoughtful group of volunteers? If this sounds like you, you should consider running for Cahdco’s Board of Directors!