What a difference two years make…
Incite San Francisco was ‘born’ a little over two years ago, at which time it became the newest regional office in our global network. I was blessed with the opportunity to join the company and lead the efforts of establishing Incite SF, and building on the momentum generated from Incite’s initial US presence via our New York office.
It seems like just yesterday, and I vividly recall thinking about, and then discussing, the challenges – and thus the opportunities – in setting up yet another research firm in the US. I outlined these thoughts in an intro piece, and concluded the article with a request to those who read it: ‘Let’s talk about how we can achieve success together.’
‘Success’ can be defined in a number of ways. As I re-read the above article and pondered what the team has accomplished, it’s wonderful to see how we (Incite and our clients) have achieved some great successes together. We are grateful and honored for the trust our clients have put in us and delighted to have made a great impact. We wanted to share a few of the ways we did it…
1 / Building and maintaining trusted partnerships
Initially, there were two of us, and we worked hard to bring the Incite proposition to market. We were rewarded on February 23, 2016 – a special day in Incite SF’s history – with our first project. We leveraged past relationships, secured a meeting, and offered to write a proactive proposal to showcase our thinking. The client loved the offer, and instead gave us a real RFP, leading to a real project. We’ve just completed our fourth project with this same client.
2 / Unlocking internal opportunities
Staffing is always a challenge, and this challenge grows when we factor in the caliber of talent Incite demands to differentiate ourselves from a crowded market. We were fortunate in having not one, but two, of Incite London’s finest researchers join the SF team in mid to late 2016 to build our business. The secondments of our London colleagues have produced a number of successes for Incite and our clients. Internally, they have certainly contributed to the tangible financial successes we’ve enjoyed as an aggressively growing business. They have also provided fantastic opportunities and experiences for employees to grow personally and professionally. All of which would not have been possible without Incite’s willingness to encourage and support cross-office transfers.
3 / Transferring and translating the Incite DNA
It’s not just what we do for our clients that’s important, it’s also how we do it: Incite’s longer-term business is underpinned by both people and process. Having established Incite staff join the business has been pivotal to embedding ‘the Incite way’ in our new SF office. Using the developed consultative practices provides different perspectives for clients, and offers new and more efficient ways of thinking about and solving their business problems. But this is not about being slaves to a process: we’ve flexed and evolved Incite’s tried-and-tested approaches to satisfy the nuanced cultural and commercial needs and norms of different markets, sectors and client organizations.
4 / Focusing on what matters
Responsiveness and service-mindedness are often over-looked traits – they’re the basics, and things that many take for granted. Making them a priority, and combining them with the more powerful elements of senior resource attention, deep up-front planning, collaboration, and thoughtful analysis (linked to pre-defined business issues) has strongly influenced Incite SF’s success.
We’re proud of the 14 firms that Incite SF now count as clients, the majority of which have now commissioned multiple projects with our team. And we’re thrilled that our philosophies and actions have attracted new talent, with plans for ‘Employee #6’ to join our team this spring. We look forward to continuing this journey into year three and beyond, and would welcome the chance to talk to you about ‘how we can achieve success together’.