Here at Stella Connect, we strive to practice what we preach. With that idea in mind, we decided to do something a little outside the box: we took our tech and product team to Utah for two weeks so they could sit with our customers and learn firsthand how they’re interacting with our platform. They visited multiple clients and sat with agents each day to see exactly what they were doing with the feedback they received once they got it.
There were a multitude of takeaways from the trip, but one thing became clear: sitting with our customers was one of the best decisions we’ve ever made. The trip, dubbed ‘Project Utah,’ started out as the brainchild of our VP of Engineering, Bill Beckler, and quickly grew from fun idea to important reality.
While it may sound a bit unorthodox for a startup to uproot key members of their engineering and product departments from their typical routines, Bill and the rest of the team recognized that this was going to lay the groundwork for what would become a key part of how Stella Connect operates. Not only did this trip allow members of Stella Connect to get to know their customers better, it also gave them the opportunity to work together in real-time to solve problems that were voiced to them directly by our users. This instant feedback enabled our team to swiftly collaborate with users and each other to brainstorm solutions that may not have ever happened had they received it second or third-hand weeks later.
It was amazing to see how excited our customers were to meet us and talk to us about Stella Connect. Being able to sit down and see firsthand how they interact with the product was invaluable.
– Jason Vou, Senior Technical Project Manager at Stella Connect
The change in the mindset of our product and tech teams was evident as soon as they returned from their trip. An increased sense of urgency, collaboration, and camaraderie was formed in two weeks that can sometimes take departments years to build, and it showed not only in their attitudes in the office, but in the huge increase in productivity we saw.
Practicing what you preach is sometimes easier said than done, but taking a chance on a trip like this is what helps to set Stella Connect apart from the rest. Building a happier, engaged, and motivated team is not just something that we aim to do for our customers, but something we aim to do within our own team here at Stella Connect as well.