Through our work with clients and our analysis of market drivers we have identified some common principles underpinning the organisations, products and services that are thriving in these new marketplace conditions. These principles underpin our process and inform our work with our clients.
A clear purpose and value proposition is essential, one that aligns organisation activities with strategic outcomes and taps into the drivers of the networked and socially-aware economy. It provides the reason for employees to be passionate in their work and customers to be passionate about spreading the word — it’s much more than just “maximising shareholder value”. Instead of asking “What do we have and how can we sell it to you?” these organisations start by asking “Who are you?” “What do you need?” and “How can we help?”
Engaging social networks and employing co-creation models requires a letting go of the “command and control” structures we are most familiar, and comfortable, with. This means trusting your employees to do their best and building the culture and structures to support them in doing so — providing autonomy to respond to market opportunities in a human and authentic way. It also extends to trusting the people you wish to engage — your customers or constituents — to play an active role in the development and delivery of your products and services.
With people demanding co-creation it is no surprise that successful organisations have built their operational models with co-creation in mind. Rather than trying to extract value from the market, they strive to create value with and for, embedding co-creation principles into their organisational DNA.
Design for the social
Co-creation of value requires a reconsideration of how you design and deliver products and services to incorporate the social dimension. At a base level this means taking a human-centred approach to design — but it also means designing for social interactions and being prepared to respond to the (positive and negative) unexpected results they sometimes produce.