Orchestrating the whole

We have an orchestra with great musicians. We have different channels / areas like strings and wind musicians. There are many difference between all the areas and there is a hierarchical order between these channels. They act different, practice within their area and come together to play a great concert.

Reading this article you may thing “not new” or “clear”. Sure this is nothing new, but it is still an issue these days. We talk about digital transformation which is a transformation in the direction of the customer experience. In the past we have had often problems to find or integrate the right maestro but we managed it. Today the need of such a person is rapidly growing. Customer Experience is the topic which has the need in it that all departments play together in the direction of the customer. Through the data customers share these days with us they get a huge power. Companies who don’t use this will loose the fight with their competitors.

Companies love the way of acting in channels because this makes it more easy to handle it and enter in the individual topics. Companies often act in some channels, less times we see companies bringing all together and play the great concert.

Why is this the case that companies don’t play the big concert?

Looking deeper at the picture above shows, that there are only wind musicians in. Looking how people act we see often a kind of channel thinking or, more general, a drawer thinking. We focus ourself on a special area and be an expert in this. Just to give an example… Let’s assume we are doing brand marketing. This is totally different then performance marketing and completely different then sales. We have learned the difference between these areas and this is influencing our thinking.

Let’s take a CV of a maestro wo is a great band leader and leave out his past positions as a maestro, just show what qualifies him as a maestro. He is playing wind musics, strings and is great in writing songs. What do you think is a wind musician and a string musician saying about him?
Maybe the wind musician is saying he is a string player and vice versa. They read the CV with their perspective and they try to categorize the person behind the CV because this makes it more easy to understand him.

To handle the complexity a maestro has is often to complex for most of us. We understand it maybe on a higher level, but really handling this is often too much. This results in the fact, that we try to pic a part of the whole and make this successful. Not that bad, right? Yes, for sure… but let’s come back to business. We are at a car dealer. Our car has an issue and we brought it to the service to get it repaired. The customer service around was that bad that we are really angry and they still haven’t sorted out the issue. At the same time sales is coming up and try to sell us a new car. We would never buy a car at this car dealer. The customer service is that bad and they are not able to sort out issues in the sense of the customer. We just think: Don’t they talk with each other internal? If they would, sales wouldn’t have reached out trying to sell something. Maybe they would have played in the background to help sorting out the issue and makes us happy first.

Sounds familiar? Such a case or a similar one everyone of us has experienced.

Thinking in channels (sales, service, etc.) doesn’t help the client. We need to work cross departments with the customer glasses on.

A maestro isn’t someone who tells the strings how to play the strings best and, at the same time, the wind musicians how to get better with their instruments. In companies maestros are often confronted with the issue, that they interfere in others work areas. In the result they often get blocked because it’s not their business. People don’t understand that the maestro is able to help them at the end of the day.

  • Do you know a great maestro in your area? A maestro who understand the whole, has a vision and is someone wo brings the different actor together?
  • How can we integrate such an a maestro in the company structure and make him successful?

One of the biggest thing blockading a maestro is fear. The fear someone is doing our job, the fear to loose our job, the fear to loose respect because we don’t handle our job by ourself, the fear of loosing money, the fear of… We don’t see the chance in it because fear is a much stronger emotion then joy.

To get rid of fears, a maestro needs trust. He needs to build trust through logic in acting (and bringing thinking acting together), empathy and last but not least loyalty. People must understand that a maestro is a chance and not a threat. More about this is covered in the series “Trust as the foundation for interaction“.

We need more maestros with a holistic understanding, a detailed acting and a vision to bring things together in an innovative way …and we need more courage to integrate them.


Interested in more? Feel free to read my highlights.


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