When you hear of decision-making using intuition, what is your reaction? As a profession that prides itself on analysis and data rigor, gut instinct may not be in MI professionals’ top sources to make an informed decision.
But our research found that the insights function is currently set up to impact only 10% of the company’s customer-facing decisions. That means that 90% of decisions are being made based on intuition and/or information provided by other sources. So, like it or not, intuition in decision-making is here to stay. The good news is if you’re smart about embedding information throughout your organization, your insights will become a part of business partners’ intuition. To do this, your department needs to:
- Improve your anticipation of business needs and synthesis reaction times to ensure fast delivery
- Use existing information flows to help spread your insights
- Correct executives’ overconfidence by creating multi-sensory, engaging, and authentic learning experiences
Not only can you make your business partners’ intuition work better for the organization, MI professionals can improve their own impact on the organization if we use our own intuition. Indeed, we’ve found that risk taking and creativity are key drivers of insight. Insights professionals can provide a lot of value by injecting their judgment throughout the research process, but all too often our team environment reinforces and prioritizes certainty-based contributions like research data over applying judgment and intuition.
A more judgment-based insights function puts team members’ intuition to work by:
- Sharing points of view even when the data available is only directional
- Developing judgment-based hypotheses throughout the research process
- Applying accumulated insights experience to problems
CEB Market Insights members, see how Diageo migrated its Market Insights function from a traditional, risk-averse department to one with a judgment-based focus. And for more general recommendations, check out this blog on HBR that recommends 3 strategies for integrating intuition into your decisions:
- Acknowledge your gut feelings, ruminate them, and use them when data doesn’t lead you to an answer
- Encourage creative thinking and feelings-based statements
- Open yourself to the messages that sporadically “pop” into your mind
Related CEB Market Insights resources: