One of the recommendations in my new report, Web Site User Experience 2010: Australian Banks, is that Australia's "big four" banks should study online retailers as as precursor to fixing their own broken website search systems. At present, these banks serve up a hodge-podge of media releases, FAQs, customer memorandums, product pages and more in their search results, giving users little clue about which search results they should click and why. By contrast, leading online retailers provide highly usable search results, which they help users to effectively preview, sort and refine.
But banks are far from the only businesses that need to look beyond the narrow confines of their own industry.
For example, when speaking with pharmaceutical marketers in Sydney yesterday, I was reminded that almost no Australian marketers in that industry set aside a portion of their budgets as internal seed capital, funding marketing experiments that are small enough to fail gracefully, but audacious enough to perhaps exceed all expectations. Big pharma, at least in Australia, could learn from how the leading global consumer packaged goods companies are supporting marketing innovation with devices like internal seed capital.
Recently, I discussed complexity with a banker working on measuring and managing complexity in a North American bank. His approach is very interesting: He found a way to operationalize complexity measurement and thus to provide concrete data to manage it. While I’m not in a position to disclose any more details, we also talked about the nature of complexity. In absence of any other definition of complexity, I offered a draft definition which I have assembled over time based on a number of “official” definitions. Complexity is the condition of: