From a podcast to a community
Scott Tran worked as a developer back in 2013 when he attended a conference for product support professionals which became a turning point in his life. He realized people were doing amazing things in product support which became the basis for the Support Driven podcast that started that same year. Through these podcast interviews, Scott talked to a lot of folks, and through one such conversation he realized that when you facilitate connections between support professionals, they start organizing meetups and networking amongst themselves. This is how the Support Driven community essentially came to life.
Quality over quantity, any day
When the Support Driven community started, it was just Scott and another member talking about their everyday curiosities. Gradually, people started joining them. It took over 6 months to get their first 100 members but that was okay because the quantity was never a concern for Scott. In fact, initially, there only was one channel on Slack where people talked about everything.
“Think of it this way - if you’re hosting a house party, and you have like 10 people there, wouldn’t you rather have them all in one room instead of opening up 10 different rooms and not have any engagement?” - Scott Tran
This brilliant idea is what fostered engagement in the community early on. It wasn’t until the community started scaling that they gave more structure to it and introduced more channels. Today, Support Driven is a 10K+ member community that goes way beyond Slack channels. They have the Support Driven Expo which is a two-day event focusing on developing skills and strategies to improve product support. Support Driven Leadership Summit is another conference that focuses on building connections in the community. In addition to this, they also have a mentorship program that allows younger and newer support professionals to learn the industry secrets.