OpenIDEO is an open innovation platform. Join our global community to solve big challenges for social good. Sign Up / Login or Learn more

"McGratitude Walls" (Gratitude Walls at McCann Worldgroup Philippines)

Our Christmas ritual at McCann, where every employee's face and name are posted on our walls, and we post fun, affirmative sticky notes :)

Photo of Niña Terol
0 1

Written by

A Christmas ritual that began in 2015, the McGratitude Walls sought to address one challenge: "How might we encourage expressions of gratitude for a company where not everyone knows each other, and in an inclusive manner that involves every single person in the organization?" 

Our Chairman and CEO thought of printing everyone's faces on our bare walls (in black-and-white print), then providing sticky notes so people can be encouraged to share notes of thanks and affirmation for everyone else.

The month-long activity proved to be such a hit and was shared by our employees on social media--that even industry colleagues, competitors, and clients wanted to know more about it and possibly use it in their own offices.

By 2016, the photos that went up on the walls were upgraded to full-color, in fun "Super McCann" templates. This year, we're leveling things up (but are still keeping it under wraps).

It's a simple idea that goes a long way, especially when everyone--even the security guards (see our most popular security guard, Ruben Billones, in the image below), the fire extinguishers, and the elevators--get thanked for making life and work a little bit easier for everyone else. :)

Idea Title

McGratitude Walls

How the Idea will inspire the experience and expression of gratitude within an organization.

Although the printing of the walls itself is contrived--making sure that every employee's face and name are there--the sticky notes that you will see on the walls are now. The McGratitude Walls give everyone a chance to reflect on the year that was, and thank everyone they've worked with that has made work more meaningful to them. We've also introduced prompts to ensure that employees remember and reach out to different groups of people within the organization--not just the ones they work with on a regular basis. Also, because the walls are huge and in-your-face, it inspires even more contributions when people see the bare walls become populated by colorful, fun sticky notes

Who are you innovating for?

Our own colleagues in McCann Worldgroup Philippines: Around 300 people from various backgrounds and disciplines who work in a cutthroat, time-starved, high-pressure industry that demands creativity and agility 24/7, where people rarely have the time to express gratitude to others, but where gratitude can go a long way. Especially the ones who work in the background without any fanfare.

What type of workplaces are you innovating for?

- Location: Manila, Philippines - Organizational size: Around 300 full-time, project-based, and freelance staff; also including service staff (e.g., security guards, cleaners, service staff, etc.) McCann Worldgroup Philippines is the largest and leading integrated marketing communications agency in the Philippines, and is part of the 23,000, 120-country-strong McCann Worldgroup network around the world.

How you envision the Idea being introduced to your selected organization?

We introduced this in 2015 and now, two years later, we hope to scale it up together with the other "Gratitude Experiments" that we've submitted for this challenge.

What obstacles, if any, do you foresee in implementing this Idea, and how would they be overcome?

So far, we've encountered no major obstacles. Everyone's been excited about this, every single year! Perhaps the challenge now will be how to keep this activity from getting "old", and leveling it up every single time so there's always an element of surprise.

How will you test and prototype your solution?

Already tested--now it's time to create even more impact!

What immediate next steps will you take if you receive an implementation grant.

This might not be the idea that would be worthy of a grant, but we'd really like to pitch another idea of ours, the Gratitude Playbook, and see how we can use our skills in creating world-class advertising campaigns and apply that to expressions of gratitude in workplaces around the world. :)

At what stage of development is your Idea?

  • Full-scale roll-out: You have developed a pilot, tested, and analyzed the impact of that pilot as it pertains to the problem scope. You are ready to expand the pilot significantly and begin to scale.

Please describe from where your Idea emerged

From an internal ideation process in 2015, when we were thinking of new elements to add to our Christmas celebrations then.

Tell us about yourself

TEAM LEAD: Nina Terol - Director for Corporate Affairs; part of the Chief Gratitude Officer cohort IDEA CHAMPIONS (2015): - Social Team: Ira Macalindong, Pam Luber, Liza Lorenzo, Nica Carlos - HR: Daisy Fernandez, Shee Mata, Colin Signio - Other McCulture members from the Creatives team: Ton Kimseng, Marlon Borreo, Adri Bautista

Where are you / your team located?

Manila, Philippines

Please describe your legal and organizational structure


Company / Organization Name

McCann Worldgroup Philippines


Tell us about your experience

Nina Terol - Aside from heading corporate affairs for McCann Worldgroup Philippines, the largest integrated marketing communications agency in the PH, is also co-founder and Chief Fireball of Kick Fire Kitchen, her entrepreneurial team of motivators, idea catalysts, and culture builders who work to inspire passion, creativity, collaboration, and innovation and individuals and teams. Has over 18 years of communications experience, including design, media, the academe, and startup mentoring


Join the conversation: