《哈佛商業評論》資深編輯賈迪納．摩斯（Gardiner Morse）解釋，行銷部門若是指派明確的角色來參與共同決策，就能與其他職能部門有效協同合作，相關內容請參考阿迪提亞．喬希（Aditya Joshi）和愛德華多．希門尼斯（Eduardo Gimenez）合著的文章〈讓決策驅動行銷〉。
我是《哈佛商業評論》資深編輯賈迪納．摩斯。我協助規畫我們雜誌以行銷為主題的焦點企畫專題，並與貝恩公司的喬希和希門尼斯合作撰寫其中一篇文章〈讓決策驅動行銷〉（Spotlight On Marketing）。這篇文章的核心是部門交界處的決策架構，也就是說，行銷部門必須與其他部門共享決策權，如資訊科技、銷售、財務或組織任何其他部門。例如，行銷和資訊科技部門必須共同決定，公司是否應購買行銷自動化平台，如果是，該購買哪個平台；而行銷和銷售部門，必須對於應優先考量哪些顧客區隔和產品線，保持一致看法。
Hi, I'm Gardiner Morse, senior editor at Harvard Business Review. I helped create the “Spotlight On Marketing” in the July-August 2014 issue, and worked with BAIN authors Aditya Joshi and Eduardo Gimenez on their article, “Decision-Driven Marketing.” At the heart of the article is a framework for decision making at the seams -- that is, decisions that require marketing to share the decision-making rights with another group, like IT, or sales, or finance, or any other part of the organization. Marketing and IT for example, must jointly decide whether the company should buy a marketing automation platform -- and if so, which one -- while marketing and sales need to align on which customer segments and product lines to prioritize.
It sounds simple, but as you know, it's not. It's at the seams that communication most often breaks down and processes stall. Does the IT team ultimately choose the marketing automation software, or is this marketing's call? Likewise, how do you resolve a situation where marketing and sales have different priorities about where to focus? Shared decisions across functions are some of the hardest to get right, because you set up a collaboration in which each group has an interest in being in charge, but there are going to be differing opinions on how to pursue an opportunity or solve a problem. And yet, it's often not clear who gets to make the final decision.
In one automaker's European division for example, both marketers and product developers thought they had the final say on which features to include in a new model. You can see how that could lead to all sorts of haggling and delays. Getting share decisions right requires much more upfront work than is usually put in. Companies must design clear decision processes and assign specific roles. A tool developed by BAIN called RAPID can help with role assignment.
It divides the decision-making process across five roles which are assigned up front – input, recommend, agree, decide, and perform. Let's consider a simple case -- marketing and IT jointly deciding which marketing automation software platform to buy. Those assigned to the recommend role gather input about the pros and cons of each platform's functionality, pricing, the vendor's track record, and so on. And they make a recommendation about which platform to buy and why.
These recommenders must have analytical skills and common sense, because a good decision depends on their data and analysis. They also need organizational smarts because part of the job is to build buy in. Those given the input role are consulted by the recommenders. And though their input isn't binding, their knowledge guides the recommendation. Only people with key information or expertise should have this input role. And recommenders need to take their input seriously, especially because the people providing input often help execute the decision at the end of the process.
A badly chosen input team mean slow or poor-quality decision making. And it means that even a good decision is more likely to falter during execution. Unlike input, which isn't binding, the perspective of someone in the agree role must be considered in the development of the recommendation. While a decision maker at the end of the process might sometimes override this perspective, recommenders should work to accommodate the opinion of someone in the agree role before they make a recommendation to the decision maker.
Consequently, it's important to assign this role carefully, say to functions like legal or compliance that manage business risks and regulatory requirements. The person in the decide role is said to have “the D.” He or she has the authority to resolve any impasse in the decision-making process and to commit the organization to action. The person with the D -- and there can be only one -- is ultimately accountable for the decision. Finally, those in the perform role execute the decision.
Ok. Now you know how to set up shared decision making in and assign roles. Let's see how this works with a more complicated example. Let's say, a company wants to assign marketing communication decision rights across multiple groups in the organization. First, leadership assembles a team with representatives from each of the relevant functions -- product management, central marketing, regulatory, marketing creative, and sales and customer service -- which you can see along the bottom of the matrix. Then it lists the decisions that need to be made. Those appear on the left side of the matrix.
The first decision being addressed is, what is the overall messaging strategy? In this case, product management has two roles. A mid-level executive in this function gets the recommend role. He or she collects input from people in marketing's creative department who likely to know what options will work with different customer segments. This recommendation then goes before senior executive and product management, who decides on the final messaging strategy. Finally, the people in the creative department who provided input implement the strategy. They have the perform role.
The second decision is about what claims stakeholders want to make in their marketing communications and what features and benefits to emphasize. Here, product management gets the D, because in this company's case, it is a steward of the business and customer strategy for each product line. Central marketing has the recommend role because it can draw on its broad experience around what product attributes resonate best with customers. Regulatory has the agree role, since this function must ensure that product claims are accurate and in compliance with regulatory guidelines.
Meanwhile, representatives from both marketing creative and sales have input roles given their jobs in developing communications materials and ultimately selling the product. In the third row is a decision about the look and feel of the materials. Product management and regulatory are assigned input roles to assure continuity between the previous two decisions in the final materials that are produced. Central marketing has the D, given its role as a steward of the brand's positioning and visual identity, while marketing creative has both recommend and perform roles, given their creative and production expertise.
Decisions at the seams are the hardest ones to get right. The key to improving is to put in extra work up front defining the decisions that need to be made, setting clear decision criteria, and clarifying the roles of those involved. When you know who has the D, you'll make better decisions. For more, read “Decision-Driven Marketing” by Aditya Joshi and Eduardo Gimenez in the July-August 2014 issue of HBR.