Here’s A Wild Idea: Curating Your Change

You’ve likely heard of ‘customer journey mapping’ – the practice of mapping out the various touchpoints each new customer proceeds through as part of the sales and implementation process. The idea is to make it smooth, easy and simple.

But what if you did the same within your own organisation? What if you methodically mapped out the expected experience for your key stakeholder groups as part of your change?

What would the change experience map look like for your organisation?

Here’s what it shouldn’t look like (but unfortunately it often does):

A ‘we need your help’ email → 10 weeks of workshops → 6 months of being ignored → Surprise implementation of something quite different → A tiny bit of training.

Bonus points: To really get your map going on steroids – you can do two more things.

First – Apply the value equation (Reward – Pain = Decision) to each journey stage, and ask yourself “does the equation stack up?”

Second – Proactively foster internal fanaticism by asking “how can we create positive disruption here? – what can we do differently in each stage to surpass their expectations and get them talking about us?”

To Action: Exploit The Unexpected

In the 1970s, the chairman of New York’s largest department store Macy’s was dumbfounded. You see, Macy’s used to sell appliances primarily to people who came in to buy fashion items. But the trend had shifted. Macy’s found themselves now selling fashion to people who come in to buy appliances. This was a noted ‘abnormality’ – as “in this kind of store, it is normal and healthy for fashion to produce seventy percent of sales…

…We’ve tried everything we know to make fashion grow to restore the normal ratio, but nothing works. The only thing left now is to push appliance sales down to where they should be.

A silly idea then, and an equally silly idea now. The unexpected is a source of opportunity. (Something that Macy’s competitor Bloomingdale’s did understand – and proceeded to exploit to catapult itself from number 4 to number 2 in market holding.)

How can you better exploit the unexpected?

Here’s a quick suggestion – you need to make the unexpected known. If you’re already engaging in collaborative storytelling, then create a new lane for ‘the unexpected’.

Probe into people’s stories with “and what surprised you?”