Brand Building: The Nestlé Prepared Food Division Approach
“Six Hats® is a simple, yet powerful tool that can be learned rapidly and used immediately to achieve long-lasting results. Six Hats has helped our product development group to generate ideas quickly, evaluate them efficiently, and implement action plans effectively.”
— Laura Donahue
Brand Building Challenge: Strengthen brand portfolios. The product development team presented 19 new concepts they had created to the marketing employees of two sub-groups of a well known frozen food brand. Each concept was quickly evaluated using the Six Hats process to look for benefits and disconnects with the different sub-brand strategies. When the panel concluded, both groups were pleased. Each had selected concepts that fit with their individual portfolios while strengthening the overall brand portfolio. Elapsed time: just one hour.
Increase Sales Challenge: A cross-function product development/ marketing/ sales team convened an idea session for the purpose of assisting a key retail customer to increase product sales. The retailer’s buying group joined the session led by a Six Hats® thinker. In less than two hours, the group generated several excellent ideas, evaluated them, selected the best ones, and created an action plan to implement them.
The Nestlé USA Food Division is home to such well-known brands as Stouffer’s® and Lean Cuisine® frozen entrees, Ortega® Mexican foods, Nestlé Toll House® morsels, baking products and cookie dough, and Libby’s® Pumpkin, among others.
The Six Thinking Hats® process was introduced to this Solon, Ohio-based division during a special application-based training session attended by employees from marketing, operations and product development groups. Participants in the session were impressed by the versatility of the Six Hats tool and the ease with which it can be used to quickly achieve outstanding results.
Now, many of these employees are successfully applying Six Hats thinking in a variety of situations within their own departments. Using the Green Hat, in particular, has helped those facing challenges to generate a larger array of options, often leading to more innovative solutions.
In fact, the human resources group was so impressed with the new thinking techniques that The Fundamentals of Creativity and Innovation: Six Thinking Hats® course will be offered to the division’s employees.