Science can be a great tool to improve your business, as it allows you to get objective, quantifiable evidence that you can use to make evidence-based business decisions. Here are 5 ways you can use science to help your business:
- Survey your employees
A great way to get feedback from your employees is to just ask them. Surveys can be a great way for you to select the questions you are interested in, and then survey employees across your company to get both quantitative (i.e. ratings of agreement) and qualitative data (i.e. open-ended responses). This can help bring to light issues within your company you may not be aware of, which could differ by department—maybe the sales employees face a different set of issues than the human resources team. You can also make your surveys anonymous to get more honest feedback than you might from a face-to-face conversation. Overall, this technique can really give you a better idea of what is going on within your company.
- Survey your customers
If you are designing a new product, a great way to get feedback from your target audience is to survey existing customers. This can allow you to see what they might be interested in and what might determine whether they purchased your new product. In addition, you can conduct a product test with a focus group to get their opinions on different prototypes. Getting to know your audience through their ratings of likelihood to buy as well as candid feedback can be really helpful before launching your product into the public market. Qualtrics is a great tool to survey both employees and customers and easily analyze your data.
- Use psychometric tests when hiring
Job applications and interviews often don’t provide enough information about candidates to decide whether you want to hire them or not. The employees you bring into your work place directly contribute to your company’s culture and overall success, so having more information when hiring is extremely helpful. Using psychometric testing can be a great way to learn more about a candidate’s personality, work ethic, and potentially their long term success at your company. There are many different tests you can use, and it depends on what you are looking for in new hires, but one great resource is the Predictive Index, which is “an untimed, free-choice, stimulus-response tool that measures a person’s motivating drives and needs” that can be used to “hire candidates who are hardwired to be a great fit, to design teams that perform like magic, and to manage employees in a way that pushes them to perform at the top of their game.” Do keep in mind that no scale is perfect and it can never truly encapsulate a person—for this reason, interviews and ‘gut feelings’ are still very important.
- Run an experiment
Not sure what option will work best for a particular problem in your business? The best way to find out is to run an experiment, where you can compare multiple options and see the different results. You can then use basic analysis techniques to see if there are significant differences in outcomes between the two options, products, etc. For example, you could have sales associates use two different scripts at random for 100 times each and then compare the success rate for the different scripts.
- Research the psychology behind your industry
Every business is run by humans. Psychology allows us to better understand the human mind, what motivates us, and why people do the things they do. One way to improve your business is to research the psychology behind your particular industry. The sales process is very psychological, and different findings from the scientific literature can be leveraged to improve your business practices and increase success. Learning about the science of psychology can really help to improve your communication skills and the way you interact with your human customers. We are all people and we are all motivated by similar things.
Bonus tip: If any of these ideas sound appealing to you, but you aren’t sure how to properly implement them in your business, hire a scientific consultant to help you accomplish these goals and provide evidence-based solutions for your business. We at The Chalifour Consulting Group offer scientific consulting services, so feel free to reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org.