Last week we introduced you to The Stakeholder Flywheel, explaining the types of roles the different stakeholders play. As a reminder we proposed that we can simplify the multitude of stakeholders down to four groups:

  • Enablers
  • Producers
  • Champions
  • Owners

Each has their own specific role in ensuring the success of your solution.

To help us understand these roles and what they are interested in, we are going to go through the Stakeholder Flywheel using a real example to bring it to life.

Before we get to that we’d like to introduce another model. Those familiar with our thinking on creating value will understand our Value Hierarchy but for those new to this, our belief is that to get to the true value, a direct financial ROI, you must first build presence; users actually being able to and then logging in. Second they must go beyond that and use specific product use cases as part of their day to day work, a simple example could be creating an opportunity in a CRM tool.

Once you have users engaging in this way, how do you get value from that interaction? Typically by adding process or additional steps. Following the CRM example it could be that by creating opportunities and the Sales Director then using specific dashboards to manage the team against, they close more of the opportunities. This gives us value from those use cases. In the aggregate what follows is a direct financial ROI for the company, in this case increased revenue.

The example we will use in the rest of this article is from a company that sells automation technology to contact centres. We won’t name their customer but rather describe it as a utility company. To help with The Stakeholder Flywheel, below is the Value Hierarchy for the automation technology at the utility company.

You will note their ultimate reason for buying the technology was to reduce the cost of their operation. More on that to come.

Let’s link this back the Stakeholder Flywheel. In order for our Utility company to reduce their cost you are going encounter many different people with that organisation that will need to play their part.

In this example the process started with a sales cycle, where ultimately our owner (the buyer) was concerned with reducing cost, if at this stage we had focused our talk track with them on functionality or integration, this would not have resonated. The job with the buyer was to express the value achieved as a direct financial benefit by using the technology instead of the previous manual processes undertaken.

That being said they expected we would work appropriately with the Champions, Enablers and Producers to ensure they understood their focus, for example that the IT enabler understood the desire to reduce cost and that he would be responsible for integrations, system set up and uptime.

The Learning and Development enabler again understands the need to reduce cost and their role in that process, in this case moving from classroom based learning to producing short online modules that can be undertaken when the technology finds time in the day. Similar processes were undertaken with the Champions and Producers, reiterating the headline of cost reduction but importantly ensuring they understood their role in achieving that. They aren’t responsible for cost reduction, but they are responsible for in the agent’s case changing the way they work to achieve this and it was vital they understood that and had confidence they would be capable.

Overall every one of these roles was required to understand that the consequence of a breakdown in their areas of focus, would lead to their company not be achieving the required financial ROI.

As we went from sales cycle to a live customer, the importance of messaging and ensuring effort was directed at the focus areas of the individuals we were required to work with became even more important. Here are two of the key metrics per stakeholder:

  • Enabler – System uptime and support/query resolution
  • Producer – Log ins and satisfaction rates
  • Champion – Time delivered and support prompts delivered
  • Owner – Cost reduction and agent engagement

What this shows is the importance for you of ensuring you are talking to the right people about the right metrics. Looking at the scenario of a review meeting with your owner, ultimately they will be looking at have you saved them the money? For this purpose, let’s say that was £1m pa. At your half year review you were on track to hit an annual saving of £800,000. The discussion would turn to the £200k gap. You should be ready to explain the gap but also your recommendations to close it, bringing best practice and evidence to give confidence in your ability to deliver.

In our example this could be that you recommend you will work with your Champions and Enablers to be more aggressive with the automation rules allowing them to create more time to be available for off phone activities. You can provide evidence from other customers that this works and has no detrimental impact of the service levels to customers. The way in which you will actually do this and deliver is not for discussion with your Owner, rather that would be seen as an action you would undertake with you Champions and Enablers who you would then work on this with and amend as appropriate before your next Business review.

Looking again at the flywheel this is it in operation. The Owner in the centre sets off a chain of activity, we have already said that will require you to change your focus with the champion, but this will also require the L&D enabler to ensure they have enough training content available to fill the time the more aggressive rules find. Also you will need to work on communication to the agent producers so they are aware of the changes and what is required of them.

We will continue this example next week when we take this a stage further looking at forums and mechanisms to deliver on these focus areas.

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