As the world has turned upside down over the past few weeks, changing what/how/why (WHW) we DID things, there is the opportunity for Insights/Analytics organization to be the one answering… WHW we WILL do things in the next 3, 6, 12 months, and after starting with analyzing the NOW. There will be NEW NORMAL in WHW consumers will be buying products and services, and what will drive those changes there will be a re-prioritization of existing need states (e.g., immediately after 9/11, man shaving needs changed from closeness of shave to safety for eight months and then returned to old normal) as well as adding new need states, we will behave differently across all our interactions and touchpoints, and this is precisely what Insights/Analytics functions should be defining, NEW NORMAL!
For years, this function tried to position itself as an advisor to businesses, and it has not happened for many reasons. However, the current situation may provide this incredible window of opportunity to do this. Business leaders will need this NEW NORMAL very soon. In the next 2-4 weeks, once they are done with immediate P&L, operations, organizational issues, and the insights teams need to act NOW to be of most help, to demonstrate their relevancy and importance. Stakeholders are asking for and are (honestly) needing this familiar, stable, logical, data-driven way of working that makes sense to them as very little did in the past few weeks. They are also thinking about how not to get bogged down in a defensive posture for too long, learning the lessons from the 2008/09 crisis – staying defensively for too long did hurt them in the long run.
A few ideas for how Insights/Analytics team should act proactively (without asking anyone’s permission)
- Organize a Rapid Business Enabling Team bringing together best strategic insight thinkers internally as well as externally (from suppliers)
- Begin immediately brainstorming and then communicating (to stakeholders) key observations on the NOW, based on experience, intuition while preparing for more data-driven analysis of WHW.
- Do this work and communication frequently (weekly) across the entire organization while addressing specific, most urgent needs of stakeholders
- At the same time, begin planning for defining NEW NORMAL and be ready with this in next 4-6 weeks.
- All suppliers should suspend their competitiveness and work closely together within this team to enable quick insights/recommendations creation and communication.
If Insights/Analytics do this, they will come out from this crisis in a different position, having a lot more respect and ensure their future place in the NEW WORLD. However, this window of opportunities will be closing soon, though, and, if Insights function does not step up, does not change, it may close the window ever to reach the desired state and be in danger of becoming obsolete. Hopefully, this will not happen, but they need to act NOW!
I welcome all to share your thoughts and experiences, other ideas that can be helpful; we are all in this together!
Businesses around the world are counting costs. Here’s how it is going to impact the CPG industry. Read more – COVID-19: Impact on CPG