Is your team on board or dead in the water? You’ve seen and heard about the benefits of customer research, You’re ready to take the leap. The only problem is you’re flying solo. You see the potential and value of working with a market research firm to help your company solve its problems. Your team members don’t. You’re ready to board that ship. They’re not. So how exactly do you convince others to get on board?
1. Distribute the Life Preservers
Change can be intimidating and distressing. One can even say it’s human nature to be terrified of the unknown. But it doesn’t have to be that way, especially if you have the right safety protocols in place. After all, caution is strategic and that is why your company has its own safety protocols in place, whether that be a contingency plan, a budget, or a weekly interdepartmental meeting.
If you want to get your team on board, you need to actively address their fears and hesitation by ensuring them that you have the right protocols in place.
If a colleague voices their concern, you can address their anxiety by saying,
“You raise a great point. I care about the growth and success of this company as much as you do and I wouldn’t advocate for this route if I thought it would be detrimental to us. In order for this go smoothly, the market research firm has agreed to abide by our company’s confidentiality agreements, stay within the agreed project budget, complete the project within our established time frame, and provide a customized, actionable solution that’s tailored to our needs.”
2. Introduce the Captain and Crew
No one likes an outsider but everyone could use an outside opinion. Sometimes case studies and client portfolios just don’t cut it.
The best way to assuage distrust or skepticism is to invite the outsider to come inside. Any customer research firm worth their salt will be enthusiastically inclined to meet your team, introduce themselves, and give a thoughtful presentation about how they can work with your organization. The face-to-face approach is the best way to determine if a prospect is truly the best partner.
3. Justify the Costs of Diving In and the Consequences of Staying Docked
Customer research is not a bullet point under accounts payable. It’s not a vendor contract or a hastily written check. Customer research is a strategic monetary investment that you can expect continuous financial returns on. It will give you the knowledge to move forward and succeed in ways you might have never known existed.
Another way to think about the cost of doing business is to ponder the cost of not doing business. Your company might not be ready to set sail but your competitors have already left the harbor. There is no shame in asking for a paddle or a compass if you find yourself attempting to navigate unfamiliar waters. Business and opportunity move fast. Don’t let that ship sail until you get everyone on board.