Just as a consumer’s experience of your organisation will determine its reputation and the position it subsequently occupies in the market, so it is with your Insight team.
No doubt you have given plenty of thought to your organisation’s customers’ experience, and mapped it and tracked it. You’ve found the moments of truth and done all you can to ensure a memorable experience that customers will want to repeat.
You know that this is important, because anything which your organisation says about itself in marketing will be completely undermined if customers’ experience doesn’t reflect your marketing positioning.
But have you ever really thought about your internal stakeholders’ experience of working with your Insight team? Have you mapped or tracked that? What do they want? And what do they get? Does it depend which team member they work with?
Build your reputation by consistently delivering a good experience for stakeholders
Insight cannot consistently drive decisions within an organisation without occupying an optimal position in the minds of senior stakeholders. And a large part of that positioning will be determined by what they experience when they work with Insight, not what you tell them they will experience.
The top performing Insight teams establish a reputation for providing critical input to strategic issues. They are invited to the table and involved early in the decision making process. This doesn’t happen overnight – you have to earn your place by building your reputation. And just like in the consumer world, you build that reputation by consistently delivering a good experience with positive outcomes.
How can your Insight team deliver a memorable experience?
Many Insight teams now include a wide range of people with different technical specialisms. Some will naturally develop good rapport with stakeholders, while others will be more comfortable at their desks, focusing on their analysis.
When under pressure, people can naturally revert to type and default to a service mentality. This leads them to respond to data requests, rather than making a point of engaging with stakeholders and probing to really understand their business issues and how Insight can really contribute to the full.
So how can you encourage a consistent approach, which delivers a memorable, positive experience across the organisation and which enhances the reputation of your Insight team?
The answer is to define and deliver an excellent stakeholder experience just as you would your external customer experience:
- Establish your Insight brand values
Think about what you want to be famous for as a team – see our previous article What does your Insight brand say about you? This is good to explore in a team workshop, focusing on how you want to make a difference for your organisation. What expertise do you bring and how do you add value?
- Agree ways of working and behaviours
Can you define ways of working that all team members can follow? What templates will ensure consistent approaches and outputs? How do you want everyone to interact with stakeholders, from the initial enquiry, right through to the key delivery and beyond? Many teams want to be seen as business partners rather than service departments, and this is your opportunity to define how you will move in this direction. Make sure that you personally always set a good example and practise what you preach.
- Build it into objectives and reviews
We all know how good intentions get lost when we are under pressure, so you need to make everyone accountable for both what they deliver and how they work with stakeholders. Ask team members to share examples which demonstrate the good stakeholder experience and outcomes that they have achieved.
Just like customer experience at a consumer level, it will take time to build a consistent Insight experience and a great reputation. But if you give it some attention, and get your team on board, hopefully, working with your team will be a memorable experience for all your stakeholders – and memorable for all the right reasons!
If you would like to explore this topic in more detail, then the IMA has published a best practice report on Insight Positioning. Please click here for more information.
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