Celebrating 10 Years of Bringing Customer Engagement and Growth
The initial genesis of WOLF occurred in 2004. At that time Julie Gilbert Newrai was creating a new business called Magnolia Home Theatre for Best Buy, now a $50 billion annual revenue consumer electronics and entertainment business. As she built Magnolia, she asked herself whether a front line employee or customer with the same idea could have the possibility of bringing a new game-changing business to life. She created a new internal program called "Venture Board" enabling exactly this and was struck by their fresh thinking, passion, and game-changing ideas. However, she quickly realized the challenges and resistance in bringing a pipeline of ideas to fruition in a corporate environment.
At the same time, she was visiting customers of high-end males and interviewing them and their wives, she had become increasingly aware of the sea change that was taking place around women’s influence and spending power here and abroad. An overwhelming majority of purchases in Best Buy stores were being made by women, and yet, no engagement or interaction process existed to bring their fresh ideas to life.
Following one powerful day of enlightenment in 2004, Julie had a dream taking her back to her childhood when she would stay up late at night listening to wolves howl. She immediately saw the commonality between what was happening at Best Buy and wolves. The voices of customers and customer-facing employees, like the howls, were unheard and, therefore, not being mobilized.
Similarly Best Buy, like other organizations, was not built with a front-line engagement of customers or customer-facing employees. Furthermore, Best Buy had not engaged the voices/howls of those that could help them serve the largest customer markets. Julie created a metholody and structure of innovation teams (wolf packs) of customers and employees spanning the globe and connected in person and virtually to key executive business leaders who could implement the best of the best ideas cutting across training, marketing, call center, webdesign, store design, hiring and other key elements of the business machine. And the winning outcomes it produced generated the most innovative outcomes, revenue increases, positive brand transitions, traffic, and operating profits in all areas impacted.
Julie persevered and early into launching WOLF negotiated the exclusive rights to all WOLF intellectual property as well as the freedom to take WOLF to companies outside of Best Buy and did so in 2009. Wolf Means Business is now engaged with companies in many industries creating financial and cultural growth.
The prestigious executive educational institution IMD benchmarked WOLF @ Best Buy and wrote a 5 year case study validating independently the results Julie led at Best Buy:
• $4.4 billion increase in revenue from female customers
(11% increase in total company revenue)
• Highest ever female market share in company history
• Females became the majority of the most “valuable “customers
• Largest increase in brand perception in company history
• 5% reduction in female turnover resulting in a minimum of $25 million in savings
• 18% increase in the number of female employees.
• 100% increase in females in the most profitable business unit
• 40% increase in female General Managers & General Managers In Training
• 60% increase in female Operations Managers
• 30% increase in female Customer Experience Managers