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What I have learned in my six months in MCCP

6 September 2021

The excitement of discovery and the desire to uncover the “so called” mystery…

This is, for sure, one of the drivers for businesses for spending so much time and resources to explore human needs & motivations – it is the desire to discover and unlock the mystery behind human behaviours and generate insights that would shape the future of businesses. The discovery stage is always exciting as it introduces the world of the less known, but, is also a double-edged sword.

In the hands of expert researchers and strategists, the discovery stage serves as a tool to uncover the real insights that feed into realistic and actionable business strategies that carry businesses into success. Or, it could lead to insights built on piles of reliable data and research findings, but the strategies somehow don’t work in the real world.

Why do some strategies work and some don’t? There are of course many factors that determine a working business strategy. However, what I have observed after joining MCCP helps me give an answer to this question up to a certain point.

Learning Number 1: “Who listens to you, your consumers and stakeholders make the most difference”
One of my learnings after joining MCCP is that generating real insights with actionable strategies starts with “being an excellent listener”.

In my early days in MCCP, I noticed that my colleagues are excellent listeners, almost up to a point you might suspect that they are armed with some invisible powers to read the mind and soul of people through the spoken words and to hear the real meaning behind those phrases.

This listening skill shows up for all occasions, either at a focus group or during an in-depth interview or during meetings with colleagues or clients. Ability to listen actively, to capture what is said and meant correctly, asking the right questions and linking the answers with the correct framework are the basis for unlocking the real insights from research, data, workshops or any type of interaction.

Therefore, who listens to you, or your consumers and stakeholders make the most difference; it is the critical difference which determines whether your business will gain a deep, empathetic understanding of the consumers & stakeholders by unearthing the insights and come up with transformative strategies or not.

Learning Number 2: “Collaboration of researchers and strategists generates authentic insights backed up by data and forms realistic, innovative and transformative strategies for businesses”
Another learning after joining MCCP was observing how strategies can become implementable when researchers and strategists work closely together in generating insights from research findings.

In MCCP, the road to creating a strategy for businesses goes through many internal “Discovery sessions”. Once the research findings and all relevant data are gathered about the industry, stakeholders (including consumers and customers) and organisation, there are many brainstorming and analysis sessions between our own teams where the researchers and strategists come together and discuss our findings.

In these collaborative sessions, every party has equal rights to speak up, bring their own ideas & expertise and share their findings and insights; every idea is evaluated with respect and analysed seriously. These discussions are the key for generating objective insights backed up by data, but, also bringing in creative, innovative and actionable solutions and strategies for businesses.

Discovery sessions give the opportunity to analyse every business within its own business and sector dynamics; the suggested strategies are tailor made for that specific organisation, that’s why it is more realistic, transformative and has higher potential to be implemented in the real world.

Learning Number 3: “Take a holistic approach and see the big picture”
One further learning is about following a holistic approach while analysing the data for businesses and their sectors.

This holistic approach appreciates that big data, or primary research data or economic models are all helpful to generate insights and understand human/consumer behaviour, however, we are also aware that they can be limited on their own. The big data or economic models are usually based on information collected about the past or the present time so they may not work well if the context is changing with evolving stakeholder expectations.

That’s why in MCCP, to generate insights for realistic and working strategies, the approach is to look and search for every type of data sources, from quantitative to qualitative research data to desk research or organisational data and always keep the context in mind. This is an approach called FreshEyes™ in MCCP where consumer, customer, organisation and industry data are analysed through objective lenses and in a holistic approach.

In addition to big data or quantitative research findings, in-depth discussions or workshops with external and internal stakeholders play quite an important role to help team members and businesses walk in the shoes of stakeholders and see the world in their point of view and to understand the context. This holistic approach is one of the key generators of creating impactful strategies based on robust research findings.

In summary, my first six months in MCCP were helpful to witness best practices of brand and strategy development for leading organisations in Ireland and in the world; observe how research findings and data are translated into working strategies by being excellent listeners, via collaborative work between researchers and strategists and by taking a holistic approach. I am Looking forward to witnessing more and working in these distinctive projects with the MCCP team.

To find out more about MCCP ways of working contact us at: meetus@mccp.ie

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