TechTalk: Happiness is When Others Can Grow With Us
Human beings need community. It has helped us evolve and survive since the beginning of our time. It satisfies a basic human need which is to seek interaction and collaboration. With the constant evolution of communities, the definition of community and business have been reinvented as a result. Furthermore, a community is a front line for positive impact on many dimensions. Especially for startup companies, people within a community are our strength.
Qiscus, as a real-time communication provider for companies, has been organizing a series of talks called TechTalk. TechTalk is a program where practitioners in the technology industry can share their knowledge with the public. This program is held at least once a month. It is not a “nice to have” program but it is the way to deliver our core philosophy which is: “When our clients grow, we grow.” You can see it, too, from our development of the Software Development Kit (SDK) as a main product of Qiscus. Because of this business model, Qiscus has helped many client businesses. This business model is strongly related to our core values and the community via the TechTalk program.
Why is a community so important for us?
While the benefits and importance of community engagement vary, several key opportunities are commonly identified. Among the benefits and importance of a community presence (Adapted from Bassler et al., 2008) are:
- Increasing the likelihood that projects or solutions will be widely accepted. Individuals who take part in these processes show significant commitment to help make projects happen.
- Creating more effective solutions. Drawing on local knowledge from a diverse group creates solutions that are practical and effective.
- Improving people’s knowledge and skills in problem-solving. Participants learn about various issues in an in-depth manner. Greater knowledge allows them to see many sides of the problem. People can also practice communication and decision-making skills.
- Empowering and integrating people from different backgrounds. Groups that feel ignored can gain greater control over their lives and their community. When people from different areas of the community work together, they often find that they have much in common.
- Creating local networks of community members. The more people who know what is going on and who are willing to work towards a goal, the more likely a community is to be successful in reaching its goals.
- Creating several opportunities for discussing concerns. Regular, ongoing discussions allow people to express concerns before problems become too big or out of control.
- Increasing trust in community organizations and governance. Working together improves communication and understanding. Knowing what governments, community members, leaders, and organizations can and cannot do may reduce future conflict.
But for us, community engagement is not just about the theory but also about what we can practically do. A community is a movement. With the rise of technologies that enable entrepreneurs to build businesses frictionlessly, we fear losing sight of human relationships. As the people building technologies to move us into the future, let’s not lose sight of the importance of understanding and interpersonal interaction.
Through TechTalk, we can design better user experiences, increase retention, and drive new growth. The power that community can wield is present even in the earliest stage of our growth. When we build a community, there is a challenge in thinking about how we can create not just a support system but also as a platform for real human interactions. The goal of this program is to make members feel that they are a part of something important and which they are proud of and hence feel special about.
Community engagement will develop strong emotions around our brand. Through a community, members can interact, converse, share and help one another. You can depend on a pool of people that you can call on individually to give feedback, test features, hop on a call or whatever else you need to do to learn more about their experience, which brings new perspectives beyond their immediate networks. We believe that when we are focusing on understanding our core user group and how users interact with other people, we are truly building an engaging product.
The last challenge, but definitely not the least, is that anyone might be able to copy your product, your brand, your design and everything else. But there’s one thing no other company will ever be able to copy and that’s your community. A community is not just about having a forum and support group anymore but it is about focusing on growth and innovation. From our first TechTalk held in Jogja, now we are approaching our 100th TechTalk which we hope to expand to other cities in Indonesia as our commitment to share knowledge and improve skills for developers and technology enthusiasts. It will be held on 21st of October 2017.