Scrum, Kanban, Six Sigma, Agile…Oh sorry, I can’t speak Japanese!
“Yes, in our organization we work in squads, we approach new projects with a very lean BPM, with JIT deployment through test and learn, but we are reducing resources via our waste management program that was enabled by a TQM implementation”.
Time out for 5 minutes. I need to breathe…Ok, go! Did you get anything out of this?
We are submersed by this new lingo every day. Our clients are also embracing this new way of speaking, and for some reasons they make us sound smarter. All I keep hearing is: “We are going lean because it’s the new thing”.
First of all, Total quality management and lean are methodologies that were invented within the Toyota manufacturing process in the ’80. So not really the latest thing, but the main question is another one: are we actually applying the right methodology to our organizations? And whenever we create campaigns, platforms or experiences, what methodology should we consider adopting?
What does it mean for us marketers?
As always there’s never a right answer for this. But generally speaking (very generally speaking) all these methodologies are designed to streamline processes and reduce waste and errors. Each methodology is right and wrong, it’s all about what you believe in, and it’s somewhat like choosing a religion. The main challenge is not what to choose, but how to embrace it.
More than change management in the business processes, this is a massive cultural shift for organizations but also for single individuals involved in it. Our creative process and our way to interact with clients shouldn’t change though. We should always keep our consumer first and keep a very business-oriented approach in everything that we are doing.
The overall goal is always to satisfy consumer needs. The speed and the internal process might change with different methodologies and our openness to market testing should be reconsidered, but that is definitely something that we can’t handle as marketers.