“40 Hours of Research in 4”
Austrian economist Friedrich Hayek said: “knowledge is not given to anyone in its totality.” What this means for business is that investment managers make poorer decisions, innovation directors miss opportunities and strategists are stumped by unfamiliar industries. Blindly searching for the answers can be an expensive waste of time. Think back to the last time you felt you needed more information before making a crucial business decision. . . This is probably an easy exercise as most of us are making decisions on a weekly or monthly basis. The important question, however, is what steps did you take to ensure you were making the best possible decision? Spend several hours googling around trying to find somewhat relevant information? Reach out to colleague or customer who most likely reaffirm your own opinion? Or perhaps buy a market research report where, much to your dismay only 2 out of those 120 pages were helpful or gave you new info? McKinsey estimates that professionals spend “nearly 20 percent of their time looking for internal information or tracking down colleagues who can help with specific tasks” (We built a nifty tool to help show how much $ that time spent searching can actually cost you and your team per year)
When knowledge is disconnected and highly dispersed, it has major implications for those professionals trying to access it. The actual expertise required is sitting in people’s heads, it’s hard to identify and generally inaccessible. However, digital connectivity enables us to match knowledge-seekers with relevant knowledge-holders faster than ever before — across geographies, time-zones and industries. Rather than wasting time searching, forward-thinking professionals partner with specialists such as AlphaSights who can deliver efficient and legally compliant access to knowledge-holders, across any topic of interest.
We observe how our own clients embrace the inevitable limits of their own wisdom and turn it into a strength. They free themselves from today’s information clutter and instead find time again to think. When we polled over 100 different strategy professionals across large corporations on how much time they save by going straight to the source of knowledge, we happened upon the startling revelation that 40 hours of research can in fact be done in 4 hours of interviews with targeted individuals who have the answers.