ACME COMMUNICATIONS, a television station group based in Santa Ana California, owns and operates stations in Albuquerque, NM, Dayton OH, Madison WI, Green Bay WI, and Knoxville, TN. Like all television station groups, ACME has been negatively affected by the economic downturn. ACME sought out the services of Essentials to (1) Benchmark top performing sales people and (2) Streamline hiring practices.
- Implement the (e3) behavioral assessment in Albuquerque, NM to test the model.
- Assess top sales people in each market to establish a behavioral profile (benchmark) of top performers.
- Assess future sales candidates based on the benchmark to streamline hiring practices.
- New hires measured against the sales benchmark outperformed other sales people by 40% in their first 90 days.
- The success of the program in Albuquerque led to a national rollout of the (e3) hiring system.
- Acme sales people outperformed the industry and their respective markets in all five stations.
- The (e3) saved valuable management time in the hiring process.
Based on the results we’ve seen since implementing the system, we would not hire without it.”
– Doug Gealy, President and COO, ACME COMMUNICATIONS
Casino Pauma, a small Indian Casino on the outskirts of San Diego, California was in need of a long-term competitive advantage for several reasons. Casino Pauma was experiencing increased competitive pressure from other area casinos including Harrah’s.
Perhaps even more pressing is the fact that the Casino Industry was down as much as 30%, year end 2008, according to some reports.
- Casino Pauma engaged Essentials to assist in customer segmentation initiatives to better understand their customers’ core motivators and behaviors.
- The (e3) behavioral assessment was administered to 150 players form three customer segments.
- (e3) Focus Groups were also conducted with each player segment. The results of the focus groups confirmed the (e3) assessment results.
Key Variables & Actionable Data
- The core motivators of the Casino Pauma player segments were identified from the data analyses. Three behavioral scales were significant: Support, Personal Adjustment, and Exhibition.
- High scorers in Support are motivated by intimacy and connection.
- High scorers in Personal Adjustment are motivated by security and connection.
- Low scorers in Exhibition prefer a slower pace, and small intimate surroundings.
- As a result of our findings, Essentials was further engaged to assist in creating a “Cheers” like environment where “everyone knows your name, and everyone is glad you came” to increase customer retention and thereby secure a long-term competitive advantage.
- Casino Pauma then integrated (e3) into their employee development systems, which has allowed them to organize their teams and focus hiring around supporting customer needs thus building a customer-centric organization.
- Casino Pauma outperformed the industry by 20% in 2008.
- Casino Pauma experienced their best December in history during the worst economy since the Great Depression.
- Player satisfaction is at an all-time high.
The success of this program has been unprecedented. In today’s economy our numbers are up, not down.
– Joseph Guiste, Director of Marketing, Casino Pauma
Cassano’s is a successful regional pizza chain located in Dayton Ohio. Since 1955, the family-owned company has been the local leader in the restaurant business by balancing tradition and innovation in the ever changing market environment. In addition to owning and operating 32 restaurants, Cassano’s also operates a growing wholesale manufacturing division that distributes dough products nationally.
In late 2005, shortly after the Katrina disaster, Vic Cassano began to notice a downturn in various sectors of the US economy. Although the restaurant business was steady, the real growth and opportunity lay within the manufacturing business. In order to avoid the looming economic storm’s impact on the overall business health, Vic sensed it was time to act.
Cassano’s realized the need to build an aggressive growth plan that would leverage the strengths of the divisions, and the need to do it with the right players. Cassano’s turned to Essentials to better understand the company’s core strengths and growth areas. This initiative involved all levels of company staff and departments.
- Conduct a comprehensive analysis of the business including: executive management, strategic plan, restaurant management, corporate culture, gap analysis, marketing, operations, systems, and financials.
- Behavioral assessments with all managers using the (e3) tool to understand cultural framework.
- Strategic plan development.
- Succession planning through organizational development.
- Marketing Plan development.
- Succession planning centered on an “intentional DNA transfer,” both operationally and behaviorally.
- Behavioral plans developed for key management to address the cultural roadblocks to building high growth businesses: resistance to change, low creativity, lack of focus and a “fire, ready, aim” operation.
- Strategic plan developed, which was integrated into operations with very high visibility for daily reinforcement.
- Daily accountability meetings were put in place with a format of “what we completed yesterday, what we will complete today.”
- Strategic brand management and marketing plan developed and implemented.
- Cassano’s had a revenue increase year-over-year during the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression. To further illustrate the difficult environment in which Cassano’s achieved this, Forbes listed Dayton, Ohio as one of the “Top 10 Dying Cities” in America.
The use of the Essentials tools to “look under the hood” of our employee’s behaviors helped us in numerous ways, both strategically and operationally. We were able to get a total view of the talent on our teams and now know just how to assign critical initiatives to make sure we succeed. Without the help of Essentials, we would be playing a guessing game and learning through trial and error, which is extremely risky in this economy, if not deadly.
– Vic Cassano, President, Cassano’s
The Daily Buzz (www.dailybuzz.tv) is a nationally syndicated television news show. Due to the intense competition in their industry, the Daily Buzz realized that if they wanted to secure a long term competitive advantage, they needed to better understand their viewers core motivators, which would then allow The Daily Buzz to develop programming that best served their audience.
- The Daily Buzz partnered with Essentials to facilitate the (e3) assessment.
- An email campaign was crafted, asking for viewer feedback and requesting each individual to complete the (e3) assessment.
- Take rate was an astonishing 20%, which is far greater than any prior campaigns.
- More than 100 data sets were analyzed on 37 behavioral scales, identifying distinct core motivators for The Daily Buzz audience.
Key Variables & Actionable Items
- Dominance, Exhibition, Fun and Military Leadership proved to be the core motivators of The Daily Buzz audience.
- High scorers in Dominance need to move fast and are bored easily.
- High scorers in Exhibition need to be center stage.
- High scorers in Fun need action, adventure and physical movement.
- Low scorers in Military Leadership are not convinced that duty, reverence, and traditional values are worthwhile.
As a result of our research, Daily Buzz segments were reduced from three minutes to two minutes. Viewer emails and after show chats were added to the program. Multiple cameras capture the action, and a brand that emphasized “irreverence, personality and fun” was emphasized.
Television shows receive Nielson Ratings on a daily basis. These ratings determine the show’s value to advertisers; the higher the rating, the higher the ad price. After implementing the action items from our research, The Daily Buzz received higher Nielson ratings in the last quarter of 2008, than at any other time in the show’s six-year history.
The (e3) is unlike anything I’ve ever seen. As a researcher, I was skeptical. This was very different, and I was locked into an antiquated way of thinking. Thank God we took a chance on something new.
– Sandi Gehring, VP & GM, The Daily Buzz