Our approach to transformation and a short history of MVIs©
Rokker have been designing, launching, and transforming clients’ businesses since 2015. From day one we wanted ‘our approach to transformation’ to be a more practical, action-based version of consulting. We want to help clients to understand where their business (or business unit) is at a given time, what the objectives are, and how they can move from one state to another in a defined timeline. As someone once said to us, “what we ultimately sell is clarity”.
Our prior experience told us that this type of transformation was very rarely down to one person, team or activity, and we developed our PRISM© methodology, deployed alongside well-proven design thinking and research capability, to capture in the inputs and insights in a 360 degree way to give us the holistic data we needed to create a robust and creative strategy around a given business challenge.
1. Definition – Create alignment on objectives with all key stakeholders, identify opportunities and blockers early on, understand clearly the constraints, timelines and success criteria around a given challenge or objective.
2. Discovery – Using a combination of primary (including interviewing internal audiences), desk-based and network research we look to clearly understand the audiences, market, competitors, comparators, processes, technology, communications, resources and other ‘sails and anchors’ related to the task in hand. We have a dedicated research team, who support analysts and consultants to ensure our data and insight is focused and thorough.
Actionable transformation through Minimum Viable Initiatives (MVIs©)
Once we have this strategic intent and associated research and insight, we needed a way of clearly mapping the actions/activity required, across potentially multiple people/teams/external parties to move the business from one state to another, in a way which met the needs of a modern client operating in a fast-paced environment – this is how our (copyrighted) methodology of Minimum Viable Initiatives (MVIs©) came about.
The inspiration behind MVIs©
To create the MVI© methodology we took learnings from Agile software development. Where you would have a ‘Minimum Viable Product’, which, in true Agile, is always evolving from a launch state, and its scope is based on customer/stakeholder input, not simply what the technology team ‘could’ develop. In the world of software/digital product, great Product Management is essential. What we ask our clients to do is think of the challenge we are undertaking as ‘the product’ and we then map the Agile process to this.
MVIs© can develop with your business
They are also truly agile and scalable, if the market changes, then you change the MVI© impacted, if someone leaves the organisation, again you just change the MVI© impacted; if the strategy changes or the business objectives change you can add or remove MVIs© and the project is still relevant. This is counter to Waterfall where broadly, everything is contingent, and it is usually unforgiving to major external forces. As the old saying goes ‘no plan survives contact with the enemy’; your MVIs© are components of a plan which flexes to that engagement, giving you the weapons to achieve your objectives even if the landscape changes.
To re-cap then, MVIs© are:
- Like Epics in Agile, they are medium sized activities that go together to form part of a larger transformation / objective
- Usually People, Process or Tool based but could equally be Research, Marketing, Communication or any other activity deemed necessary to reach the objective
- Underpinned by a set of tasks and OKRs, all of which are accountable and measurable
- In some cases, contingent but in other cases non-linear
- Adaptable to internal and external forces / changes
- Part of a wider corporate roadmap of transformation
- Efficient in that they are detailed within a controllable timeframe (short-to-medium term) but strategic in mapping objectives over a longer period
In our process, MVIs© are created in our Ideation phase and mapped in our Planning phase, on from that we (Rokker) can support a client in the execution or general management of these MVIs should they wish. In all cases, we would support measurement around the effectiveness of these on a quarterly or biannual basis.
Following on from Definition and Discovery we move into the following stages of our process:
3. Ideation – Taking the output and insight gathered through Discovery and then using both strong industrial logic, and a good amount of collaborative creativity, to define a well-thought through set of activities (MVIs©) which go together to achieve the wider objective