Identity is a conversation between the story I tell about who I am and what part of it resonates in who is listening. Identity is, utlimately, a relationship. We must be aware of how we design it, of the promise it holds.
Who am I for my people? What type of relationship have I established with my clients? What is the role I want to have on the market? How do I want to relate to Others (co-workers, peers, clients, society, etc.)?
Organisations are often not aware of their narratives’ dynamics because they didn’t explore the image of themselves they have created in their publics’ mind, both internal and external. And they have not taken enough care of what sort of relationship they promise to their stakeholders.
For instance, narratives such as: I want to be a brand you can have fun with… or one you can test your limits with… or one you can build your self-confidence with… are often not followed by consistent practice. A few examples: in the first case the company had created a very stressed internal work environment and treated clients with conceit when they called to complain for a disappointing service. In the second case the company, leader in its market, has a very conservative and retreated way of acting, never taking risks on innovation and refusing to change a Board team clearly unprepared for the new challenges of the market, following the rule “we’ve always made things this way…”. The third case is about a company in which having a leading role in the market ended up in a narrative of self-contempt and ultimately in a serious crisis after a few failures in a few years.
Designing our Relationship promise consistently with our Identistory and our audiences.
A Customer Care Relationship Promise. How can we change the Customer Care culture of a major corporation in the entertainment business and make it go from a technical, distant and cold approach to a warm, empathic, close one?
Narrative techniques to gather and map the image that the members of the CC team had of their clients; group coaching and counseling sessions to analyse it and elaborate a new relationship promise, training on relational skills to help staff adopt the new relational empathic attitude.
We started from the “guts” of the CC service to explore the narrative of the Clients they had to change the inner image of them and therefore the very technical and not empathic attitude they had relating to them.
We designed together a new relationship promise to the Client, defined the appropriate tone of voice and learned how to embody it.
We built a handbook of the new Tone of Voice with relational tips to offer insights and starting points to help create a more sound and positive relationship with the Client on the different touchpoints. Last but not least, we set up an ad hoc training to exercise empathic relational and language skills.
The reported cases are all real projects. References to people and organizations have been omitted to protect the confidentiality needed when working in sensitive areas such as identity and relationships.
Business and Professional Identity
Narrative Humanities and Relationship Design
Individual and Team Coaching and Counselling