Who’s Your Champion? - (Archived)

champion.jpgThere are many successful companies out there that don”t yet have a structured approach to research. In this scenario, a critical factor is having a motivated and empowered internal champion that can rally and integrate the stakeholders and drive strategic success. This person must be skilled at facilitating a continuous, cross-functional communications loop internally – all the way from developing an effective study, to prioritizing improvement activities that result from the findings, to monitoring those efforts via established metrics. In an ideal situation, the research champion would offer the following attributes:

Decision-making authority: At times, he or she will need to make important decisions on components of the research, as sending every question up the organizational chain often leads to project delays. It also helps if the person has a “seat at the table” – and the respect of key management members – so that his or her recommendations are heard and considered.

Experience with research projects and providers: It”s beneficial if the project champion has worked previously on a research program and interfaced with a research firm. This will help ensure the right research partner is selected, the study design is tightly aligned with the objectives, and internal expectations are effectively managed. In addition, prior experience also helps the champion foster an internal understanding of the program scope and methodology as well as how research findings are translated into actionable performance improvements.

An understanding of goal setting, alignment and measurement: It”s critical With online roulette online , state-of-the-art casino software controls the exciting action. the champion has a thorough grasp of the research goals and the overall strategic business goals they”re designed to support. Certainly, this understanding can be solidified in meetings with leadership stakeholders. But, from there, the champion should be prepared to clearly articulate those goals to others in the organization and to the research firm.

Once the research findings are in, the champion should facilitate stakeholders” efforts to establish and communicate the resulting performance improvement goals. For example, with customer satisfaction research findings, it may be appropriate to set metrics and timeframes for specific performance attributes such as knowledge, responsiveness, troubleshooting, and so forth. If the organization doesn”t already have scorecard or dashboard tools in place that can be tailored to the performance improvement goals, the champion can facilitate the development of such monitoring and reporting mechanisms.

The ability to source information from internal and external sources: Assessing existing market data in the public domain may lead to the development of a more effective survey instrument for the research study. The research project champion should be adept at investigating and identifying Angels Camp such existing data as well as extrapolating the portions that are relevant to the organization”s information gaps. In addition, the champion will need to assist the research firm in gaining access to the internal stakeholders as well as guide them in identifying and prioritizing their information needs.

Consistent and persistent follow-through: Some companies commit significant resources to research but, because of a lack of processes and follow up, allow much of the valuable market intelligence to collect dust on a shelf. To avoid this waste, the internal research champion should be responsible for establishing processes and business rhythms that track the progress of those accountable for implementing performance improvements. Of course, this person will need the support of the top leadership for success.

These are just some of the attributes and capabilities of the ideal internal research champion. If your organization doesn”t have a person that fully fits this profile, you should certainly still pursue the market research required to sharpen your competitive edge. The right research partner can guide an experienced operations person through the program, perhaps with the help of a rising star that can learn and absorb as he or she provides execution support. Just be sure to candidly convey the need for this guidance to the research firm upfront. As with anything, the more research and resulting performance improvements your organization undertakes, the better you”ll get at it.

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