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Business Change Management

Business Change Management

What Professional Services Risk If They Continue To Avoid Change

On Dec 12, 2018 8:56:56 AM

/ Andi and Andy Simon

Categories: Culture Change, Corporate Anthropology, business culture

Despite how much people love the abstract notion of change, when it really happens, they hate it. That's because real, lasting change requires some big shifts in how you do things. And what we're seeing with many of our clients is that adapting to today's new technology, new business environments and new generations’ approach to the workplace is bumping up against people’s resistance to change and their understanding of what this thing called “culture” really is. 

Changing corporate culture is particularly difficult because the human brain is designed to rely on habits and certainty. When people hear the words, “We have to change the way we do things here,” their brains immediately look for ways to protect the status quo.

So given all the roadblocks that people's brains put up, how do you drive change?

The challenges of changing a culture, particularly a professional services firm

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What Higher Education Needs Is A More Powerful, Blue Ocean Strategy®

On Dec 7, 2018 7:54:58 AM

/ Andi and Andy Simon

Categories: Culture Change, Corporate Anthropology, Blue Ocean Strategy, Higher Education

A perfect storm of disconnect: higher education and changing times

At SAMC, we do a good deal of work with higher education institutions. Why? Because we're all about culture change and helping organizations find their Blue Ocean Strategy so they can adapt to what's coming (or in many cases, what's already here). And what we're finding is that today's colleges and universities desperately need both — culture change and Blue Ocean Strategy.

Case in point: If you look at classrooms from the years 1900, 1950 and today, you might be surprised, or dismayed, to see that they are all very much the same. Take a look:

While this antiquated educational system still hasn’t changed much, the world outside is changing faster than ever before. What to do?

Higher education needs to re-think its entire approach

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Entrepreneurs Do Customer Research Through Corporate Anthropology

On Oct 26, 2018 10:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: anthropology, corporate anthropologist, Corporate Anthropology, Business Anthropology

Is your company developing a new product or service? Are you planning a product launch? Do you want a better understanding of customer behavior and needs? Finally, are there major pain points which your product or service needs to solve?

Every successful entrepreneur knows that to grow your startup into a thriving business, you need to understand your customer. Easier said than done...particularly when you're about to introduce a new product or service into the market and compiling a group of statistics isn’t an option. That’s when the smartest course of action is to rely on corporate anthropology.

As an entrepreneur building a business, you can gain a crucial competitive advantage by using the methods and techniques of anthropology to help you tap into the behavioral patterns of your consumers. From a customer's first encounter with your product to the purchase stage to their return visit, anthropology enables you to get a better grip on how individuals interact with your brand.

As a result, you'll be able to successfully develop a product offer and a customer experience that meet consumers' demands and solve their challenges. To give you an idea of what I'm talking about, here are a few examples of how to successfully apply anthropology to your business.

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Hire Anthropologists! It Might Be Your Smartest Business Move

On Oct 13, 2018 7:27:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: anthropology, corporate anthropologist, Corporate Anthropology, Andrea Simon, business change management, business leadership

Recently I was interviewed by INSIDE Public Accounting on the business applications of corporate anthropology. I will be speaking at IPA's 2018 PRIME Symposium conference, so this interview served as a kind of sneak peek into what I will focus on in the culture change workshop I'll be conducting. (You can read the entire interview here.)

My focus was on the importance of observational research to better understand why people behave the way they do, especially when interacting with a product or service. By observing behaviors, anthropologists are trained to see things people do not always know they are doing. These observations then lead to all types of insights, changes to processes, modifications to services, and even innovations.

Equally important was how these "new" ideas and insights help organizations rethink what they are doing. Often, they can better hone in on their targets because now they have a deeper understanding of their own "ways of doing things" and how well they align (or don't align) with their customers' needs.

Since we know that change is painful, observing with fresh eyes how something is being done can often enable people to better see ways to change those habits. Pretty amazing insights emerge from a little anthropology!

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How Anthropology Unleashes Your Employees' Talent

On Oct 11, 2018 10:23:33 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: business change, Culture Change, Corporate Culture, Corporate Anthropology

 

As you may know, our mission at Simon Associates Management Consultants is to help organizations change. Whether it's a large high-performing organization or a mid-size owner/operator, helping businesses change is our focus and our specialty. It's exciting work!

But, change is something that people hate. The brain hates it. The culture hates it. We see this all the time with our clients. Most organizations have a hard time implementing new ideas and new ways of doing things, even if they are good ideas and better, more productive ways of doing things.

So, what to do? How can you successfully change your organization? As corporate anthropologists, we have found that what works over and over again is "a little anthropology." Watch this webinar and you'll learn why and how you can do it too.

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Innovative Applications of Corporate Anthropology in Business

On Oct 9, 2018 8:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: culture, anthropology, Corporate Culture, Corporate Anthropology, Andrea Simon

Applying the humanities to business isn’t anything new. In fact, the corporate world has a long tradition of embracing various studies of human society and culture to explain and benefit its many strategies. And when it comes to anthropology — the study of human and social behavior — the story isn't much different.

But as the pressure mounts for college students to take STEM courses (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math), the humanities and social science programs are struggling to sustain their relevance. Nevertheless, there are still humanities majors who dominate the business world, and 75% of today's entrepreneurs were liberal arts majors, in part because there were no programs teaching entrepreneurship when they were in college.

Fortunately for those with anthropology degrees, there has been an increase in recent years in the application of anthropology to the world of business. This has given birth to the term "corporate anthropology" — the study of human values, beliefs and behaviors in the business environment. Now, anthropology is thriving in business, driving change and innovation in a number of different areas.

Here is a brief overview of how corporate anthropology is changing its role in the business arena, how business is changing anthropologists, and why should you try it for your own company.

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Great News! On The Brink Named 7th Best Book On Corporate Innovation

On Aug 8, 2018 8:34:20 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Corporate Anthropology, Business Anthropology, business innovation

Want to read one of the best books on corporate innovation? Pick up mine!

I just got some great news that I wanted to share with you right away. Fupping.com has recently named my book "On the Brink: A Fresh Lens to Take Your Business to New Heights" to its list of 9 Best Books To Read On Corporate Innovation. "On the Brink" comes in at #7! 

I guess I shouldn't be surprised, as it's a book all about using the tools and methods of anthropology to step out and see your organization with fresh eyes, then turning these observations into innovations. And corporation innovation is the focus of Fupping's Top 9 list. Here's how Fupping describes it:

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Entrepreneurs: Focus On Unmet Needs Through Visual Exploration

On Mar 27, 2018 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: anthropology tool kit, Corporate Anthropology, change, business growth strategies, Entrepreneurs

 

If you are an emerging entrepreneur searching for a big idea or a budding business owner building your new enterprise, you are probably great at seeing things with fresh eyes. You know that people are waiting for new solutions to their recurring problems.

Maybe they are struggling with a problem for which they have still not found the right answer. Maybe your partners and suppliers have pain points dealing with your processes and systems. Or, maybe your own employees might be struggling with company practices that aren’t working. 

Whatever the situation, people need some great entrepreneur to see things with fresh eyesand bring them the help they need! 

It isn't more of the same, cheaper.

Whether it is the needs of a new customer you want to serve, or the challenges of your staff with your business model design, or the irritated supplier who wants you to get it right, you have some work to do.

But before you can solve your customers' and employees' issues and improve the situation, you need to know how they really “feel.” What are their thoughts? Their opinions? What changes do they hope to see? Which of your products or services do they wish were different? How do they solve their problems now? Do they decide to use competitors' products?

To answer all these questions, you need to go to the source. Please don't just ask them! Go Exploring!

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How Anthropology Can Save Your Business

On Dec 5, 2017 7:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Business Anthropology, Corporate Anthropology, anthropology

The reason I love anthropology is because it teaches you to see, feel and think in new ways so you can successfully adapt to change. These days, it’s not the strongest or smartest who will survive—it’s the most adaptive. Nowhere is this more apparent than in the business world, where anthropology is beginning to play an enormous role. Indeed, when anthropology is applied to companies, truly amazing things happen!

This week's Top Picks:
4 ways to learn about anthropology's massive impact on business

Corporate anthropologists are finding that people know all too well the challenges of building and sustaining a business, especially in these fast-changing times. What they need is a new toolkit, an anthropologist's toolkit, because what worked in the past isn't working today. Opening your eyes to the possibilities that are all around you is at the heart of how anthropology can help revitalize a business. Check out the 4 resources below and let me know if lessons learned can help your business. Enjoy!

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Are You Ready to Find Your Blue Ocean® And Get Growing?

On Oct 17, 2017 1:02:00 PM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Blue Ocean, business growth strategies, Corporate Anthropology

At Simon Associates Management Consultants, we have led over 300 workshops and dozens of client engagements to help companies “see, feel and think” with fresh eyes—so they can step out of their current mindset and see new opportunities.

Recently, we presented the workshop “Who will be your customer in 3 years? Maybe they are all around you?” to a group of mid-market CEOs who are members of a Vistage International group led by Ozzie GontagA terrific, inspiring coach (and marathon runner), Ozzie reminded me and his members that growing a business means engaging in a daily battle between leading and lagging indicators.

As Ozzie said in his opening remarks, "Every day you have to challenge your assumptions about what makes your business successful today and what will make it sustainable into the future. These are two different questions."

How true! Unfortunately, CEOs of growing companies all too often focus on the past and the present and forget about the future. As Blue Ocean Strategists, our job in these workshops is to open up people's minds to see what is often right in front of them. When they finally "see" the possibilities, it's fantastic, as I describe in my recent Huffington Post article

The essence of Blue Ocean Strategy: finding and then filling unmet needs 

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