Company Core Values: What It Takes to Build an Enduring Tribe
ArcherPoint is celebrating our 20th anniversary as a Microsoft Dynamics Gold ERP Partner for Dynamics NAV and Dynamics 365 Business Central, and we are sharing about our culture throughout the year to help our readers get to know us better. We truly believe one reason we’re still going strong is our core values intentionally incorporating them into our culture. This article focuses on our core value, Building an Enduring Tribe distinguished by collaboration and always putting the good of the community, clients, and colleagues above self-interest.
Why a “Tribe”?
We use the term, “tribe” because of what we learned from Tribal Leadership: Leveraging Natural Groups to Build a Thriving Organization, by Dave Logan, John King, and Halee Fischer-Wright. The book theorizes that any organization have many separate tribes, and the key is to understand how to identify, assess, and lead those tribes to maximize productivity and growth. It focuses on utilizing the unique characteristics of each tribe and relationships, both internal and with the world around us. It spoke to our leadership because, like any fast-growing organization, collaboration and communication are crucial. We were inspired by the idea that at the highest level, a tribe carries the mentality of “competing with the possible.” We wanted to own and create our future, and it felt natural, then, that one of our core values should address our tribe.
An Enduring Tribe: For the Good of the Many
I’ve been with ArcherPoint for 14 years, and I know first-hand of the many examples of how we’ve strived to live the core value of Building an Enduring Tribe. Here are just a few:
I Love NAV
The first example that comes to mind of our commitment to this core value was I Love NAV. Back in 2011 (long before Business Central), the future of NAV and other Microsoft ERP products was unsure. Microsoft had acquired several ERP products and we found that it was difficult for partners and customers to stay informed or provide product feedback to Microsoft. With the release of NAV 2009 R2, which included a significant architectural change, users experienced challenges with upgrades and reporting. Microsoft was hard at work moving us towards Business Central, and in the meantime, the community needed a way to communicate.
We devised a way to crowdsource ideas for the product, and anyone could vote on ideas: I Love NAV was formed. The site climbed to nearly 250 contributing members who submitted nearly as many unique product suggestions, and Microsoft enthusiastically embraced and supported it; in fact, many of the ideas from the I Love NAV site were incorporated into the product.
I Love NAV prospered for more than two years, but the goal was for it to be a community site, so it was not conducive to participation for one single partner to own it. So, we turned it over to the Dynamics NAV User Group (NAVUG) in 2013, and it remained active until Microsoft began more frequent releases. I Love NAV served its purpose, bringing the community together and providing a way for them to have a real impact on future releases of the products.
User Group Support
If you’ve ever attend Community Summit, you’re aware of Dynamic Communities, Inc., or DCI. Back in the days of I Love NAV, it was the NAV User Group (NAVUG) that put on an event called Forum, which included educational classes, networking opportunities, forums to share challenges and solutions, and having direct discussions with the developers of NAV in support of the NAV user community. Since day one, ArcherPoint has been a contributing member.
We are huge fans of what user groups do. We enjoy participating, and see it as clearly connected to building an enduring tribe.
ArcherPoint Summer Internship Program
2014 was a big year for building an enduring tribe, in which we launched our first-ever Summer Internship Program as a way to invest in the next generation of Dynamics NAV talent. Our 12-week program focused on providing real-world experience. We started with a 3-week Cross Disciplinary Boot Camp that focused on project management, business analysis, and Dynamics NAV consulting and development. Interns then were assigned to ArcherPoint mentors and worked on site at a client, in a consultative role, or with an ArcherPoint employee through paired programming. The program lasted for five years and was a great experience for everyone. Today, two of our interns are still ArcherPoint employees.
An Enduring Tribe is All About Community
There are many more examples–several of our developers have been named Microsoft Most Valuable Professionals (MVP) for many years in recognition of their contributions to the Microsoft Dynamics community, to name one more–but the take-away is that a strong organization looks outside its walls for ways it can give back. More about that in a future post.
Join Our Tribe
Does this core value sound like you? Would you like to work for an organization that puts the needs of the entire tribe as well as customers and community first? Then we’re looking for you. We invite you to explore opportunities with ArcherPoint.