Learning How to Adapt to Changing Market Conditions Through Design Thinking
Businesses operate on their own but anytime that there is a major disruption in the market, there is no other way to go but to learn and to adapt. It is the capability to quickly respond that could make or break a team. The Global Energy Company recognises this, and it is their objective to apply design thinking to be able to shift into a whole new direction.
Global Energy Company is known for its flexibility when it comes to changing market conditions. They have experienced growth and expansion as they have always kept close watch of movements influenced by competitors, customers, technology, events, and other factors.
Whilst expecting another major market change, Global Energy Company sees business model restructuring as essential and forthcoming. Determining which business model should they transition to and how is where Naked Ambition comes in.
Global Energy Company aimed to identify near-term, short-term, and long-term opportunities, also called Horizons 1, 2, and 3.
Because of the company’s very high-demand work schedule, Naked Ambition designed a 4-day Sprint which will be spread out in two and a half weeks. Eight employees from different departments participated and they were grouped in pairs with complementing skillsets that will be useful for the challenges that will be assigned to them. Naked Ambition also made sure that the company’s key teams like the Retail, Digital Marketing, and Innovations Departments are well-represented.
The Sprint was run offsite for better focus and to avoid interruptions.
The four highlights of the Sprint are:
- Analysis. These are exercises that were held for participants to understand both the design thinking methodology and the issue at hand. It was crucial for participants to fully realise the need for the company to modify its business model along with the factors influencing the change. What used to be just a task for senior management, now became a reality for the participants which was also expected to result in better appreciation of top management efforts.
- Field Research. Participants were asked to observe and to conduct rapid interviews with their customers in-store to get new information and to validate existing data that they already have.
- Design and Prototyping. At this stage, the participants tried to design ideas and solutions based on the data that they have gathered. The draft suggestions were all aimed to improve the way the business operates, to increase profit, and to improve by which services are provided to its customers. As transitioning to a new business model involves potential barriers and issues, it was also necessary for the participants to provide solutions to these items as well.
- Testing. The Sprint used a “test early” strategy so that the participants can re-evaluate their ideas and solutions right away. Testing was done directly with the customers to be able to get their feedback right away or if the participants need to further explain the concept. The teams really embraced the ‘idea as an experiment’ philosophy.
By using design thinking as a concrete process to support innovation and creativity, the participating teams were positioned to continue their work as a test-bed for everything retail. The teams made significant progress on their challenge areas, with two of the concepts being implementation within their applicable teams, and one more disruptive idea from Horizon 3 going in for research within the teams.
The Sprint was able to train Global Energy Company in practicing insights-driven analysis and concept prototyping. It also set a model for the business to focus and to include customer feedback in their decision-making process.