Ethnography as a catalyst for organizational change: Creating a multichannel customer experience

Robin Beers, PhD, Wells Fargo
Tommy Stinson, Cheskin Added Value and Jan Yeager, Cheskin Added Value

This paper describes how a leading financial institution uses ethnography as a catalyst for organizational change by providing a collaborative context for functional groups to come together in co-creating a multichannel customer banking experience. While consumers increasingly expect a good cross-channel experience as a de facto element of their engagement, few companies successfully deliver this experience in a compelling way. Because functional groups are siloed, focusing on their own business goals and managing their own discrete parts of the customer experience, there is limited understanding of the experience as a whole and limited interest in bridging units to improve customer experience. Building a 360° view of the customer is an “excuse” for people to step outside their silos. The ethnographic process becomes a collective learning platform where people gain a common understanding of the customer and how they’re accountable for delivering the customer experience.