For all us marketing types, December is an interesting time of the year. It’s a time where we are busy finishing projects for this year while at the same time visioning projects for next year.
Earlier this year I spent time committing to paper various exercises business teams can do to better vision who they are and why they exist.
These exercises were designed to help businesses find THE PASSION CONVERSATION that can spark long-lasting word of mouth from customers and employees about a brand, organization or cause.
If you find yourself in need of better understanding what your business stands for, why it deserves to exist and what exactly appeals most to your customers then these three “Passion Exploration” exercises might help.
You game for playing?
If so, here’s my suggestion. Gather together a small team of no more than 16 people, but no less than eight. Be sure to go outside of your department and include people from other areas of your business. (Bonus points for including people who interact directly with your customers.) Pick one, two or do all three of the following Passion Explorations.
Passion Exploration #1 | WHAT’S OUR CAUSE?
Gather a group of employees together and split them into smaller groups of three-to-four people. Find markers, index cards and large poster paper. Have each small group work together to draw a picture of your brand as a superhero. Make sure they assign their superhero a superpower. Then, ask the following questions to spark a meaningful discussion:
Passion Exploration #2 | JUST ONE THING
Again, gather together some employees. For this exercise consider keeping the group small, no more than eight people. Set the scene by having everyone imagine that your business can only do ONE THING for your customers. Yep. ONE THING. Have people write that ONE THING down on a note card and then, one-by-one, have people share what they’ve written down. Next, use the following questions to spark a group discussion:
Passion Exploration #3 | WOULD YOU BE MISSED?
It’s easy in the midst of our never-ending workload to forget about the value we add to others’ lives. But that’s the very reason we’re in business in the first place. This exercise explores just that, the passions that people have for why we do what we do. Gather a small group together and for 30 minutes answer the following questions:
It might be nice to also do this same exercise with your customers, adapting the questions a bit. Listen for and discuss the possible shared hidden passion conversations inside the answers to why customers and employees would miss your business. If you happen to discover that your business wouldn’t be missed, then you’ve got some serious matters to address in what’s left of 2013 to make the most out of what’s possible in 2014.
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