Think Like Your Customers: Beta-i helps Galp bring their customer-centricity into focus

Beta-i partnered up with Galp to help bring customer-centricity into the culture of Galp. This resulted in the project “Think Like Your Customers”, a training program focusing on human-centricity through design thinking.

According to an article on Harvard Business Review, the greatest barrier to customer centricity is the lack of a customer-centric organizational culture. Since most companies are product-centric, or customer-centricity is a concern only in marketing or customer care functions, to implement a customer-centric approach to business is necessary to have a culture that aligns with it — and leaders who deliberately cultivate the necessary mindset and values in their employees.

What is Customer Centricity?

A customer-centric approach adds value to a company by enabling it to create a unique user experience and differentiate itself from competitors who do not offer the same experience.

A customer-centric approach to business entails:

  • Thinking like a customer
  • Dealing with needs, not wants
  • Providing solutions, not just products/services
  • Focusing on Customer Lifetime Value
  • Being proactive instead of reactive

Getting out of the Building

In order to shift into this strategic centricity, it was important for Galp to lean in one its strategic pillars: to enable employees for a cultural shift and give them the tools and skills to problem solve.

To be client-centric you have to be employee-centric.

João Filipe Torneiro, Head of Marketing & Business Development at Galp

For João Torneiro, Head of Marketing and Business Development at Galp, it’s clear that to innovate in the energy sector it’s essential to transform the internal culture: “A company like Galp, a leader in the sector, cannot afford to not move into customer centricity, and in doing so, cannot afford to not take risks. Which is what our team is doing.”

To achieve this, Beta-i devised a training program for Galp’s collaborators focusing on human-centricity, using design thinking methodologies.

The program had 60 participants across different departments, from retail to marketing and tech.

The first phase of the training consisted of workshops in design thinking and the customer journey, customer interviews and prototyping.

Then, the employees put their new learnings to the test – by actually going into multiple Galp gas stations and convenience stores and interacting with real customers in order to identify their pain points and their unmet needs.

For the second phase of the training, they worked in groups to focus on a particular problem and, through ideation, find and prototype a customer-centric solution for the gas stations’ customer experience – actually becoming innovators the way startups do, with coaching from the Beta-i team.

The final show

The final results and proposal were showcased to the Galp collaborators on a small private event. The excitement in the room was palpable, as participants showcased and explained their innovation journey to other colleagues. These projects ranged in scope – from payment solutions and digital solutions to the reinvention of the space and purpose of gas stations.

Susana Quitério, from Business Intelligence, shared her experience in the project, noticing how the methodologies and first-hand experience can add and complement standard market research, and even how the research became even more relevant in the support of innovation.

Even for employees working directly with operations of the gas stations, the new methodologies allowed them to “take-off the operations manager hat” and find new approaches to the business and rethink what they can offer to consumers.

It was challenging to walk the customer’s journey and try to understand each phase and its pain points. It definitely made us more creative in regard to problem-solving.

As highlighted by João Torneiro, and also Joana Teixeira, Beta-i’s project manager, the experience achieved its important goal: changing the mindset towards customer-centricity and acquiring the skills to problem solve.

“This is a great outcome thanks to the joint effort of our team and Beta-i, who brought the added value of the knowledge in methodologies and innovation experience.”

João Torneiro

Head of Marketing & Business Development at Galp


Why Corporate Innovation Needs Anthropologists? 

Why Corporate Innovation Needs Anthropologists? 

The question “Why Corporate Innovations Needs Anthropologists” has been gaining relevance lately because of two “instances” – academy and corporate world. Application of anthropology and ethnographic practices as a useful and relevant mark for data collection and analysis within academia and beyond – in business, industry and policy making -, so it starts to be a focus of important reflections and discussions in both sides.

Nevertheless, application of proper anthropological practice and ethnography is asking for in-depth discussions and critical reflection between both sides. The first major steps have been taken with the advent of “Why the World needs Anthropologists?”, whose sixth edition took place in Lisbon on the past October, subjected to the theme “Designing the Future”.

The event organized by the EASA Applied Anthropology Network had Beta-I – an innovation platform – as one of its main sponsors. Here, Beta-I anthropologists shared how they use applied ethnography in order to unlock the potential for innovation within different corporate contexts.

The synergies within the event have shown that the debate cannot be confined to a single annual event. It is imperative to follow up on these question in order to make the subject more tangible and applicable – to turn ethnographic methodologies into visible, appealing and understandable results!

Now, Beta-I and EASA Applied Anthropology Network present a step forward in the direction of strengthening their partnership with a new chapter of collaboration: locally organized satellite events “Why the World Needs Anthropologists?”. The main objective of this collaboration is to demystify the importance of applied anthropology, quality research and thick data within different settings and diverse fields – industry, business, policy-making and society.

Why corporate innovation needs anthropology – Health Edition

In the first edition of “Why corporate innovation needs anthropology – Health Edition” the session will feature the following guests:

  • Miguel Crato, Portuguese Hemophilia Association;
  • Cristina Ventura, Public Policy Manager of Roche Pharmaceuticals;
  • Isabel Lourinho, Psychologist and project coordinator/researcher for Beta-i;
  • Ana Isabel Afonso, Anthropologist, assistant professor (FCSH)

The moderation will be in charge of Laura Korčulanin (EASA AAN), Helene Veiga (EASA AAN) and Alisson Avila (Beta-i).

The “Why corporate innovation needs anthropology – Health Edition” will take place on 13th March at Ler Devagar (LXFactory) bookstore and is scheduled to start at 5:00 p.m.

“Why corporate innovation needs anthropology – Health Edition” has the invaluable support of CRIA (Centro em Rede de Investigação em Antropologia) and APA (Associação Portuguesa de Antropologia) as media partners and Esporão and Ler Devagar as logistics partners.