The needs assessment project was to identify a process that needed improvement and to carry out a performance intervention to improve the process. This was an individual project completed at the company of employment. The project involved identifying through thorough analysis a root cause of an existing problem.
The problem identified was one of declining sales of a new product launched that was expected to be a winner. As a member of the marketing team that acts as a liaison between Sales and product development, the needs assessment focused on how the team could better support a product launch and what educational materials, marketing tools, and resources can be provided to support the sales teams.
This project helped delve deeper into the process of a needs assessment and to narrow down the root cause of a problem. Several tools used included – a Needs assessment checklist, asking the 5 whys. It helped think about performance intervention on a very specific problem and not broadly. It also helped to think of ways that the current role within the organization could be improved. While the end result of the project provided learning opportunities, it was the thought process and learning along the way that helped drive home the importance of thorough needs assessments. Initially, the problem of declining sales was viewed from the lens of the sales teams. However, following interviews and discussions with stakeholders and gaining a deeper understanding of the business helped narrow the focus down into a contributing problem that was more fixable and that could add value to the bigger picture. With funneling down the problem to its most causative elements helped identify factors that were more within reach and easier to fix. The detailed report summarizing the project, the process followed and the key findings and proposals for improvement can be read here: Aarti Ramanathan: Addressing Sales Decline at Door Experts