Feb. 20, 2018

Ep37: Of Paper Towels and Nespresso Machines

Ep37: Of Paper Towels and Nespresso Machines

Over at the World Wide So Here’s My Story Podcast Headquarters, we have lots of great discussions. But this one is special, because it all started with a trip to the washroom. Solutions often have unintended consequences, consequences that could...

Over at the World Wide So Here’s My Story Podcast Headquarters, we have lots of great discussions. But this one is special, because it all started with a trip to the washroom.


Solutions often have unintended consequences, consequences that could have easily been prevented with a little bit of forethought. And that’s what we are talking about in today’s episode.


Why is that important for business?
In order to prioritize service, you have to make assumptions about what kind of services your customers want. And sometimes those solutions have unintended consequences, or completely misread the customer need.


Often, we neglect to ask ourselves: What would it look like to implement these strategies? What problems can we see if we think it through? It is really easy to throw out big ideas that sound like great solutions without thinking through how you would actually implement them operationally. And in order to think it through operationally, you have to talk to the people who are actually going to be taking the calls.


Sometimes, solutions offer access, but since part of your job may actually be anxiety management, knowing everything is often not a benefit to the client. If solutions aren’t focused on the user experience, they may not be helpful.


This isn’t about creating paralysis, of believing we must think of every possibility. But it can be helpful to have a heightened awareness that every solution comes with a new set of problems and trying to think through what those next set of problems might be.


At times, a short term solution can create a bigger long term problem, or a solution that makes sense operationally can cause cultural issues in a company. You are not going to decide the best escape route while flames lick under the door. You need to rehearse change. This is not about predicting the future, but about becoming a learning organization; this is not about stacking up regrets or creating indecision, but about being a beta test organization.


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