Happy New Year! With the beginning of a new year, Mytech would like to take this opportunity to share with all of you the steps we have taken in 2011 to explore and define the Mytech culture. When we started this journey, as with many journeys, we did not know where this exploration would lead and we still do not know the details of the road that lies ahead. However, based on what I have seen over the past 9 – 12 months in our organization and the excitement or buzz that is felt in our office we are on the right path along the journey we are calling the Mytech Culture Experience.
As Mytech has grown over the past 11 plus years we realized that as an organization we developed a personality, a common value set and sense of humor. The problem was that we had not taken the time to define the personality and values that should be the mortar that holds an organization together. We were not empowering Mytech staff to make decisions based on a shared value structure. We were not able to hire staff based on alignment with our core values. We were not able to reward staff that exemplified the defined values. We were not able to coach staff based on how our core values apply to expected behavior. Finally we were not able to celebrate and experience the harmony created by an entire organization aligned with defined values that permeate every interaction we have between staff, with our customers, our vendor partners and even personal relationships outside of our organization. To be clear, Mytech has only reached the first milestone along this journey which is to have the ownership and staff agree on values that we feel defines who we are as an organization. The real challenge is to continually reinforce the values through regular communication, reward and coach, hire and fire based on our values and to empower everyone affiliated with Mytech to benefit from the positive environment created by aligning with and living by shared values.
The Mytech Culture Experience will be a common theme in our monthly newsletter so please join us every month to get an update on how we are doing and hopefully to share in the experience. As a preview, next month we will include our Mission, Vision and Core Values in the newsletter as well as highlight one of the Mytech staff who exemplified one of our core values in the month of January. However to kick off the Mytech Culture Experience newsletter column we wanted to share a brief chronological outline of the different components of the experience we executed over the past 12 months. The overall intent of the process was to capture the sentiment of the entire company - to not influence or manipulate toward one person's vision regardless of rank within company. Here are the steps Mytech took in 2011:
Announced to staff that we recommend reading "Delivering Happiness" by Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos. Mytech purchased a copy of the book for every staff member
For those who read the book we held two optional discussions that pertained to the first and second half of the book respectively
Mytech announced our intent to engage on a culture experience to define our core values
Mytech created, with volunteers, a culture committee – non owners only
Mytech's culture committee and one owner flew to Las Vegas and participated in a half day Zappos culture experience at their headquarters
Mytech Partners, Inc. and SUCESS Computer Consulting held our 5th annual TechPulse event: twincitiestechpulse.com where we announced our Culture Experience Journey to our customers, vendor partners and prospective customers. The Grand Prize at Tech Pulse was a trip for two of our customers to embark on the Zappos Culture Experience with Mytech and SUCESS later in 2011
Mytech placed butcher paper along the wall of our break room and asked the staff to write, draw, express their view of Mytech both what it is and where they would like it to go
Members of the culture committee independently wrote up a list based on comments written on the butcher paper
The members of the culture committee combined the independent lists, eliminated duplicates and fused similar ideas to consolidate the concepts
The culture committee went through a final exorcise to crystalize the list that they felt exemplified the spirit and meaning of the concepts expressed by the Mytech staff into defined values
The culture committee presented the final defined value recommendations to the Mytech Board of Directors
After dialog from the October meeting, the culture committee made some minor revisions and sent to the Board of Directors. Mytech owners along with two customers flew to Las Vegas to participate in a half day Zappos Culture Experience, we are thankful for incredible customers who joined us on this journey. The Board of Directors held their annual planning retreat and reviewed the values presented and offered some insight with regard to how the values should be presented
The culture committee rejected some of the suggestions and ratified the final Mytech Core Values that will be presented to all of our staff at our annual holiday celebration on January 6th 2012.
Please stay tuned in future newsletters and during our 2012 Tech Pulse event for updates on the Mytech Culture Experience!