How Superheroes Help Us Stand Out in the Crowded IT Field
Recently, I participated in a leadership session where we reviewed Arraya’s Vision, Mission, Core Values, and Unique Value Proposition (UVP). It’s good to reflect on these occasionally and make sure we are living and working by those statements. While I found the conversations worthwhile, the conversation about UVP in particular struck a chord with me.
As a prompt, thinking about what sets Arraya apart from the rest of a very crowded IT field generated plenty of interesting points and counterpoints. Some members of the team felt Arraya was best defined by our innate ability to set customers’ minds at ease. Others, that our blend of boutique service and enterprise-sized skill is what makes us … us! I see truth in each of those statements; however, as we talked, I kept thinking about the one thing that is the differentiator to me. I believe Arraya’s unique value proposition, our biggest differentiator, is our people.
Relationships are critically important to everything we do in business, whether it’s a relationship with a teammate or a customer. Even in this age of machine learning, artificial intelligence, and virtual reality, for businesses, it is still about human interaction. It’s about the sales team’s interaction with customers. It’s about the collaboration internally between sales, pre-sales engineering, inside sales, project management, the delivery team, and finance. So many of our customers have no idea of the immense behind-the-scenes effort that goes into every engagement and deal. And those folks here in Plymouth Meeting never complain – they just keep producing; producing for the sales team and producing for you, our customers.
Knowing how important it is to have the right people, I couldn’t be happier that Arraya has chosen to regularly reward our best of the best, or, as we call them, our Arraya Superheroes. Once a quarter, we shine a spotlight on an employee who has gone above and beyond for our customers. Typically, their picture goes up on a plaque in the lobby, they get their story immortalized in our quarterly company newsletter, and they receive a gift card as a small token of our appreciation for what they do. However, I thought I’d take it a step further and give a shout out to our most recent crop of Arraya Superheroes.
Check out our Arraya Superheroes
First up is Bill De Sandro, a Senior Solutions Engineer on our Cloud and Workspace team. Bill earned his cape during the first quarter of 2017 by taking on some of Arraya’s most challenging projects with boundless enthusiasm. During the second quarter, we honored Gary Place, a workhorse Project Manager who brings engagements across the finish line on time and on budget and has embraced being the face of Arraya for our customers. The third quarter saw Kelsey LeBlanc, our Marketing and Events Coordinator, rise to the rank of Superhero for serving as the point person at our biggest and most complex event, the Tech Summit, and so many other events that occur throughout the year. We capped off 2017 by honoring Charles Coulter who, while serving as a Senior Systems Administrator on our Managed Services team, has become a real leader – one who never backs down from a project. Lastly, our first Superhero of 2018 was Dave Brill, one of our Enterprise Architects and someone whose super power is managing a packed calendar without letting our customers down.
Probably the hardest part of picking our Superheroes is only picking one a quarter. I can’t even guess how many times I’ve met with a customer and had a discussion temporarily derailed while they praised one of our engineers or a member of my sales team or someone else from the company. I have to admit, I love those tangents. All they do is strengthen my belief that Arraya’s team is one of the strongest I’ve worked with and that the people on it are what truly set this company apart.
I’ll wrap-up my blog with one final thought. I’ve been here for a little more than one year and that year has absolutely flown by! I’m often asked by people, “What is it about Arraya that has you so excited? What is happening that the marketplace is seeing a new sense of energy and excitement at Arraya?” In one word: empowerment. The ownership and leadership team empowers us all to deliver “superhero” service, to each other, and to you!