Free trial

Does your audience want a free trial? Of course.

Do you have the resources to offer a free trial that delivers the right experience to the right audience, making them excited to continue on their journey to become champions of your own perspective?

Most companies would answer no.

And yet, they offer a free trial.

And that’s because a free trial, with the right form to capture the right information – credit card, of course – is very little about experience, about user journey, about changing minds and behaviors, while it is very much about boosting vanity metrics.

Your choice.

Not exciting anymore

Three reasons why the new tool, system, process, structure rolled out in your organization is no longer as exciting as it initially seemed.

  1. The people making the decision are the not the ones impacted by the decision. Very often, the people impacted by the decision are not even consulted in the decision-making phase. Assumptions and second guessing are key criteria.
  2. There was a tacit expectation that the tool, system, process would have been welcomed by everybody as a cure for all that is bad. In other words, nobody really gave change management a thought – and if number 1 is true, you are most likely already drifting into number 2.
  3. There is no agreement on accountability and how success is going to be measured. People will do everything to avoid saying: “we failed (and we will not fail again)”. Flawed solutions will be around for years, until a new change can be sold internally. Putting the process back at number 1.

More rounded

We think of most things as linear experiences.

That’s certainly true in business. The funnel is linear. The go-to-market process is linear. The sales pipeline is linear. The launch of a new product or service is linear. The very same metaphors we use to describe those things (funnel, pipeline, launch) are linear.

And yet, success requires that you circle back and iterate with the new information you have acquired. That you adjust the trajectory continuously with the help of what you are learning as you go.

It turns out that to be succesful in what matters we need to apply more rounded thinking.

The shades of remote work

Fake dilemmas make the world flat.

To make decisions that are not impulsive and destructive, we need to be able to add shades (and data) in between the dichotomy.

Some shades regarding remote work from three recent studies: The effects of remote work on collaboration among information workers; The Blinkered Boss: How Has Managerial Behavior Changed with the Shift to Virtual Working?; Work from Home & Productivity: Evidence from Personnel & Analytics Data on IT Professionals.

  • Remote work, when extended to the whole company, reduces the opportunities and the willingness to connect with people who are not directly working with you.
  • Hybrid work should probably not be about coming to the office whenever someone wants, but rather about organizing days in which certain teams, or the whole company, goes to the office.
  • Remote work does improve the individual’s capacity to focus and reflect, does improve the individual’s capacity to deliver on their own tasks, and has a negative impact on aspects of work that are relational or people-based (e.g., understanding and motivating others, or dealing with difficult situations).
  • Just because productivity does not take a hit from remote work, it doesn’t mean that individual productivity has not decreased. People might be simply putting in more hours, for example because they have to attend more meetings or because they have a stressful situation at home.
  • Remote work does decrease the opportunity for interaction with supervisors, and in particular the opportunities to get coached by one’s supervisor.

Note: thanks Ethan Mollick for sharing the studies in the first place.

Unique personality

In whatever you do that matters to you, make sure to put a touch of your own unique personality.

When you apply for a job, when you write a blog post, when you deliver a speech, when you interact with others, when you are in a meeting, when you are bringing your boss up to speed, when you are out with your kids or talk to your parents. In every single situation there are many rules that have but one job: to make things predictable and dull.

Rules are important, and you should follow them. Few people are happy when all of their expectations are disregarded.

But remember to add a touch of your own unique personality. Few people are happy when all they see around is predictable and dull.

It is a difficult balance to strike. Just don’t forget who you are and what you stand for.