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The biggest behaviour change campaign you’ve ever seen!

25th September 2015

You may already know a bit about us, but for those of you who don’t, we’re an independent design agency, and have been now for close to thirty years. During the last decade our focus has been on helping organisations communicate internally, and specifically so by using creative communications to help change employee behaviour.
 
We’re therefore passionate about understanding what makes people change their behaviour, and so we’re always on the lookout for examples of such in the real world – which we can extract learning’s from, to help us innovate in our approach to internal campaigns.
 
Also, by being designers/creatives we tend to keep a close eye on developments in the tech world, and recently we’ve noticed some very interesting developments indeed. The advances in tech (which we will explain later) offers reason alone for fascination, yet it is the technology combined with behaviour change principles, that is giving rise to the biggest behaviour change campaign we’ve seen in many years, and when examined in a bit more detail it’s easy to see why…
 
 
Firstly the technology. We’re betting you’re probably desperate for us to reveal what it is we’re referring to. OK, but we’ll keep it to the point, as it’s quite an expansive subject area.
 
The interface of the future.
 
By that we mean the way by which you’ll enter and interact with the digital world. Think Google Glass, that showed us a future where we will no longer be stuck looking down at our phones to consume content, but instead information will be served to us naturally, when we need it. More recently, there’s Facebook M. Facebook’s view is that we’ll have one singular interface that we interact with in a conversational way. The need to access a vast array of apps and web pages for desired information, will be no longer needed, instead you’ll ask your conversational interface a question and from there you’ll get the content you need.
 
Now, even though Google Glass, to many, is/was seen as a flop, it did achieve one thing; it opened up our eyes and primed us for change. And when it comes to behaviour change campaigns, ‘priming’ is a vital element for success.
 
But to be effective, priming must be relevant, and to do so it must relate to a human truth. For the ‘biggest behaviour change campaign you’ve ever seen’, the human truth is about freeing us from our dependency on our smartphones, and trying to reduce the accompanying problem of digital overload.
 
Yet even though people may have recognised the position they were in (phone dependance, digital overload) the thought of changing their behaviour was truly ignited because they had been primed for change. They had been shown a possible future that offered them a solution to their current problem. So much so that people now have an expectation of what the digital interface of the future will soon look like, and they are ready to change their behaviour accordingly as they are fully aware of the benefits this will bring.
 
As internal communicators, we have to identify the employee behaviours that require changing, with subsequent focus then being on what the human truth is behind the change. Once identified, and especially so for bigger, harder to change behaviours, attention should be given to priming employees for change – by bringing the human truth to life and the benefits available to them of changing.
 
They say no one really likes or wants change. But if you prime someone the right way, then they’ll expect and demand it. Just be sure you can deliver them the change they have been primed for. As in the case of ‘the biggest behaviour change campaign you’ve ever seen’ we’re all fully aware of the change that needs to be made, but to adopt the behaviour, we now need the technology to catch up – which in terms of a natural, streamlined interface is likely to be some way off yet.
 
There you have it, that’s a little snippet into our process, showing how learning and inspiration can be taken from all areas, and applied to internal communications thinking. If you’d like to find out more about how we could help you with your internal communications, please do just get in touch.
 
Until next time…
 
Rima
 
 

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