My key learnings from the interview with Ole Tillmann on how to pitch processes

To gather more ideas on how to inspire people for processes, I talked to Ole Tillmann in the latest episode of the New Process Podcast. Ole is strategic brand and communication consultant, executive coach, and founder of PEAK Creative Leadership GmbH. As one of his core activities, he is helping startups to create successful pitch presentations. – And now, I am trying to leverage his experience to pitch processes. 😊

In essence, we were talking about two different challenges:

  1. How to pitch processes to top management
  2. How to inspire employees – or people in general – for processes

To pitch processes to top management, Ole recommends designing the story from the perspective of the listeners and to get into the heads of the target group: Adopt their mindset, frameworks, and thinking. Which problems do they have? How do they make decisions?

Then use their frameworks and their mindsets and put everything into an action-oriented version of your content to pitch a specific process or BPM in general by explaining what’s in it for them.

The presentation should be concise, visual, and simplified so that the top management understands the value of it and they can make a decision right away.

If you take that to a more abstract meta-level, I would say that every top manager has a vested interest in making their ideas, strategies, thoughts become reality. – And BPM can help with that, of course.

Like a magic transformer: you put the strategy in on one side, something magical happens inside, and the perfect new world comes out on the other side. Who wouldn’t want that?

So, in one way or another – always matching your organization – something like that should be the core of your pitch presentation. Create an inspiring image of the product vision so they can’t even say no. Answer the questions: What is the product all about? Why is it important? Why now? Who is the user? What is the user experience?

Ole’s expert advice is to then visualize that vision and make it a story that picks up, inspires, and excites the listeners.

To build your pitch presentation, you can go through a creative process which looks like this:

  • Do brainstorming, open up in a divergent phase, and create as many ideas as possible for your presentation.
  • Boil the ideas down in a convergent phase and reduce them.
  • Do rapid prototyping and put the different slides you would like to create for the presentation into a storyboard by using sticky notes. Just put them on a wall to have a first idea and then:
  • Let it go. Go to bed, take a nap, or do something completely different to let the ideas work in the back of your mind.
  • Finally, start a new cycle and add all the ideas that came to your mind in another phase of brainstorming to the storyboard that you already have on the wall.
  • Improve the storyboard, the story you would like to tell, and then boil it down again.

As you see, it’s a cycle, a process as well. This can be used not only to pitch business ideas or process to different stakeholders. It can be used for all the presentations you are creating in your job.

To inspire people for processes, Ole recommends making processes experienceable for the people. In the interview we deep dive into an example we have developed together for Lufthansa Group three years ago. It’s the so-called Pizza Game. This is about the execution of a pizza baking process given as a process model, which is played in several teams. In our example of up to 20 teams. In each team the roles necessary to bake a pizza are assigned and then the process is learned and executed according to the process documentation. The ingredients needed are scissors, pens, and paper. Then there are several rounds of improvement and also standardization to scale each team’s best practices. All wrapped up in an inspiring story, enriched with theoretical input and brought to life with a lot of love.

I just want to point out that making processes and their value experienceable is the most important aspect to consider if you would like to inspire people for processes.

In addition, add the theoretical background to these practical experiences to make it repeatable. So, combine both: emotions based on practical experiences on the one hand side, and theoretical input on the other side to make it repeatable. That’s the idea on how to inspire people for processes.

If this interests you in detail, I recommend listening to the podcast episode with Ole.

So, these are two new ideas for getting people excited about processes. Feel free to try them out and report back on what you learned. – And if you want to know more about this, feel free to contact me! I’ll be happy to support you! 🚀


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