To stand out from the crowd in today’s competitive business world, it is essential to act in a customer-centred way. Consistently practising customer centricity is the magic word. In this case study, you will learn exactly how this can be achieved.
A customer-centred approach to the job
This year, we enjoyed an assignment that put our competencies to the test, for once in the medical sector. On recommendation, we received a request to conduct a qualification in project management.
As we know, it is important to us to find customer-centred solutions, so we used the Design Thinking approach. Design thinking, as the name might suggest, is not just for designers. Rather, it is a process, toolbox and attitude that even the most traditional thinkers can adopt – or we can 😉 .
The problem-solving approach, design thinking, focuses on understanding and considering the needs of users to create innovative solutions. It usually includes the following phases:
Listening and meeting the client where they are at the moment
In the sense of “understanding” and “observing” – the first steps in Design Thinking – we held discussions with the client. Not only to shed light on the assignment, but even more so to sense their needs and pain points. In the process, it became clear that the client was fundamentally interested in transforming the existing classic qualification format. Instead of exclusively full-day seminars we went for innovative approaches, beyond the mandate of conducting a qualification. Building on empathy, we opened up incentives for them to think in the direction of hybrid learning journeys or camps, which are, among other things, our passion.
Opening up new paths and orienting the customer
To ensure that the proposed concepts did not remain foreign words for our client, we created a rough design of a hybrid learning journey. The presentation of this in a joint discussion met with enthusiasm. This verified the reformulation of the client’s problem – the step of “defining the point of view” in design thinking.
Putting our heads together in a creative and competence-oriented way
Always oriented towards the needs of the client, we generated creative ideas and potential solutions for a comprehensive qualification concept in brainstorming during our Lunch & Learn meetings as a team. The basis for this was the design of the learning journey agreed with the client in the design thinking step “finding ideas” as well as the competence approach of wanting (motivation), knowing (cognitive knowledge and skills) and being able (applying the skills and abilities in real situations).
Creating exceptional customer experiences with a focus on needs
A few weeks and iterations in the team as well as with the client later, the “prototype” of design thinking was ready. An overall concept that provides qualification units for all competence areas. To ensure a positive experience and even more an experience for the client and the end-users, we built special features that are client-centric. Self-learning modules with multimedia related links allow participants to acquire knowledge at their own pace and in their individual preferred learning style. Various hybrid units place an increased focus on peer group building and community learning, which enables the exchange of experiences and mutual support. The real-life cases of the participants used in the application exercises facilitate the subsequent transfer of what has been learned into everyday working life. All in all, the learning journey is varied and exciting.
Feedback, feedback, feedback is the motto
Now, in the “test phase” of the Designing Thinking, the participants are working diligently on the implementation of the Learning Journey. Close coordination and feedback with the client should enable continuous improvement of the qualification. Opportunities for improvement can be identified and the Learning Journey units can be adapted if necessary.
Once again we were able to experience the feeling of client trust. With sensitivity, we were able to sense the needs of our new client and understand their business requirements and challenges. Thanks to the customer-centred solution options, he showed himself willing to go down new paths of qualification together with us. Regular discussions allowed us to include the customer in our conception phase and to always capture and consider his opinions. In this way, we were able to find the best possible solution for the client. Even after the first implementation steps of the Learning Journey, in which both the client himself and other employees participated, we met a satisfied client. We remain curious about the further experiences!