A couple of weeks ago, we explained the key principles of agility in today’s quickly and continually reshaping world (link). Based on requests from our readers, here is the first principle brought to life.

The first step toward agility is to frame each business problem with clarity and specificity. Then to pick methodologies that can specifically provide answers you can use to truly solve the problem. Without this clear end in mind, we have seen teams get seduced by a new tech solution or fall in love with a shiny methodology.

Here is an example from the life sciences industry. A client’s R&D team was developing a new oral administration method to improve adherence. Their patients struggled with the size and number of pills they had to take each day. As they considered different pill sizes and numbers (patients could take 6-almond size pills four times per day or take “4-horse pills” two times daily). They needed guidance, quickly, on the right size and appropriate dosing frequency to drive compliance by reducing the burden on their patients.

The client’s research team contracted with InCrowd (a mobile-led technology app) as their potential research supplier for this project. They identified certain challenges early in their execution. InCrowd is primarily a qual-oriented platform, focused on Health Care Providers not on patients, with a limited number of ready respondents. It is a good option for short, simple qualitative surveys. It’s not the right option for this project.

To answer the questions on pill size and dosage, the right approach is a quantitative study, among patients, with a larger sample, which can provide data, at a high confidence level, on the right combination of pill size and usage frequency.

The Shapiro+Raj ExpressInsights Team designed a learning agenda that used a sample of 6X more respondents than InCrowd could provide. To ensure more realistic feedback, we sent respondents actual placebo pill samples in both sizes. We ran some very sophisticated analyses for a data-driven answer. We also used S+R AQuA, our ML/AI app to gain “qual” insights from the open-ended questions in the survey.

This holistic approach gave the client teams fact-based data to make their decision. Their decision has grown adherence and made a meaningful impact on their brand and business. And we were able to do this entire project 32-days faster and $22,000 less than their initial plan.

Hope this example defines how we think about agility. It is about speed and efficiency. It is also about scientific rigor and strategic acumen. The Insight Economy™ requires this integrated approach. We would be happy to talk through this example, and others, if you need. Just let us know.