Erin Steinmetz | September 24, 2014
Arraya Solutions CTO David Bakker has a passion for innovation. This passion comes through, not only in the way he runs the business here at Arraya, but in his focus on fostering it within the company culture. Bakker’s focus and keenness for this topic has spurred our recent Innovation Series – a compilation of blog posts that delve into how Arraya does more than just talk about having an open, innovative culture. It outlines why Arraya’s leaders find it so important, and how they work every day to ensure its workforce is fully engaged and inspired.
Bakker is now taking his message on the road – to Temple University in Philadelphia. He’s been asked to be a guest teacher for a class on Emerging Technology, which is part of Temple’s Master of Science in Information Systems program. The class is titled, “Leveraging Social Tools to Foster Workplace Culture and Education.”
The class description is as follows: There’s no denying the massive role social media tools play in people’s lives outside of the workplace. However, some companies have resisted putting those emerging and already-here technologies to use during the workday, preferring instead to stick with what’s worked for them in the past. While the old ways aren’t quite dead, companies that aren’t staying on the forefront with social media tools and trends are leaving themselves at a disadvantage. They could be missing out on valuable opportunities to make collaboration and training easier and to grow and spread their own, unique culture among their staff.
During his stint as guest-professor, Bakker will explain how to lay the foundation to foster innovation, including how to create an environment where employees feel comfortable speaking up, both in person and on social media. He’ll also go into detail about the tools Arraya has implemented to put these ideas into practice, like SharePoint, Yammer, Lync and Jabber. Using these tools gives employees the chance to learn from each other and collaborate on social media, reducing the amount of time and resources the company needs to spend on traditional, classroom-based training methods.
He’ll focus on how businesses can keep company culture strong. This is a challenge Arraya faces every day – managing employees who are working remotely and trying to keep them in tune with the workplace culture. These social tools help everyone to stay connected to the inner-workings of the company, no matter where they’re working from.
The key to this strategy catching on with employees and becoming a success within the organization starts from the top down. Arraya’s managers and supervisors took the lead and immediately began utilizing these tools to communicate with their employees and each other. And of course the biggest proponents of the initiative here at Arraya were Bakker himself and his partner, CEO, Daniel Lifshutz.
There’s obviously a lot more that goes into fostering a culture of innovation than enterprise social tools. Make sure to check out Arraya’s Innovation Series here on the blog for additional insight on this topical initiative. The Temple University presentation will be tomorrow evening, September 25th, in downtown Philadelphia. You can check out David Bakker’s blog at https://blog.davidfbakker.com/.