Companies are always looking for new ways to understand their customers, but few might think to look to anthropology for those insights. Dr. Andi Simon, author of the new book On the Brink: A Fresh Lens to Take Your Business to New Heights, shares some of the anthropological tools and strategies she uses to help businesses solve their most pressing problems.
Dr. Andi Simon is a corporate anthropologist and the founder of Simon Associates Management Consultants. She has over twenty years of experience as a senior executive in the financial and health care spaces, and now she helps companies and non-profit institutions develop their purpose, brand positioning, and redesign their culture.
Andi talks about how she made the jump from academia to corporate consulting, where her expertise was more in demand than you might expect. We talk about why observing customers is an effective way to find out what they really want and discuss the outsized influence of human habits on productivity. Andi shares some success stories from her book, all of which have a common denominator: the power of storytelling. Finally, Andi touches on how she and her colleagues help companies make big shifts in their internal culture.
Andi’s simple and time-tested techniques have transformed individuals and organizations alike. Be sure to tune in for some fresh insights about how you can do the same.
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On Today’s Episode We’ll Learn:
- Why tech and manufacturing companies are turning to anthropologists for help communicating with customers and employees.
- How people’s habits and mental shortcuts likely affect their voting habits, and how this held true in the recent U.S. election.
- Why you must observe your customers first in order to understand them.
- Why you should be asking employees and customers for their stories, not just facts.
- Some of the digital observation tools that Andi uses to understand customers’ habits.
- How to affect cultural change within your organization, and what you should do as a leader to facilitate it.
Key Resources for Andi Simon:
- Connect with Andi: Website | Twitter | Simon Associates Management Consultants
- Amazon: On the Brink: A Fresh Lens to Take Your Business to New Heights
- Kindle: On the Brink: A Fresh Lens to Take Your Business to New Heights
- Audible: On the Brink: A Fresh Lens to Take Your Business to New Heights
- Ep #17: Business Anthropology with Christian Madsbjerg on The Brainfluence Podcast
- Ep #97: Martin Lindstrom and the Power of Small Data on The Brainfluence Podcast
- Undercover Boss
- “How Hillary and Her Team Missed What Was in Plain Sight” by Andi Simon
- “Kahneman’s Mind-Clarifying Strangers: System 1 & System 2” by BigThink (from Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman)
- OCAI Online
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Full Episode Transcript: