We’re a few weeks into 2017 now – a time when those well-intentioned new year’s resolutions face the trials and tribulations of ‘everyday life’, writes Simon Hackett, Pegasus MD.
Those changes we’ve committed to – whether we’re adopting a healthier regime or ditching an unhealthy one – will either unravel or begin to form the foundations of habit over the coming weeks.
Figuring out why it goes one way or the other is a big part of what we do as a business. Our purpose is ‘inspiring healthy decisions’ and we’ve long been fascinated by the drivers and possibilities of healthy behaviour.
But more recently we’ve explored how we might bring even more rigour to our work with a new planning approach. We wanted to develop a more robust methodology to help us build campaigns that deliver the clear, measurable change in behaviour our clients need.
For us, this meant going back to school – to University College London, to be exact, whose Centre for Behaviour Change is recognised internationally for its thought leadership and wealth of practical experience.
Working in partnership with UCL, we developed CHANGE: a proprietary model that identifies the barriers to behaviour change and strategies to overcome them.
It’s what Dr Lou Atkins at UCL calls “a fantastic coming together of the public and private sector to drive the behaviour change agenda”, and we’ve already had overwhelmingly positive feedback from our clients after training up our 100+ team on CHANGE.
I’m very proud of it. Behaviour change is all too often a buzz-phrase, thrown around with little care or substance. Through investing in this model, we’re already proving that a solid understanding of behaviour is absolutely essential for great work.
Creating and living this model has prompted a change in our own behaviour; by placing more emphasis and effort in our strategic planning process, we’ve seen a more focused creative development process that produces ideas with real conviction.
Other things have remained the same, however. A model is only as good as the insights that are fed into it, and no amount of academic thought will prevent us from going out into the world to meet our audiences.
Whether it’s getting the wellies on to chat with a dairy farmer or talking to a female focus group about their skincare regime, understanding is always the first step towards genuine change.
If you’d like to talk to us about your planning and strategy, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org