Marie STUTZMANN is a woman of actions, founder and director of the agency Angle 9. Carried by the human, she has always had the desire to guide, to advise others to allow them to move forward, to grow. Sparkling, but above all passionate… It is based on an action essential to companies which, for it, is essential in life: to innovate.
Anthropology, a vocation of always
Marie STUTZMANN has always been attracted to anthropology. This science makes it possible to disentangle the complexity of humans and cultures. She turned to this field as soon as she studied, with a PhD in anthropology applied to business issues. Studies carried out at the University of Strasbourg. But anthropology is not a field providing jobs in the 1990s, not yet being developed in professional uses.
She then entered Sciences Po Paris, in order to perfect her knowledge, where she studied management.
Today, I speak fluent business and human
After her studies, she worked at Orange, then at Lectra, in Cestas, but she dreamed of something else. The idea of starting your own business does not leave it. She then began to think about buying a company, but finally decided to create her own structure. We are then in 2013, and his reflection begins. And two years later, Angle 9 was born. An innovative consulting agency, an innovation agency.
Angle 9, taking a step towards innovation
Marie STUTZMANN built Angle 9 on the basis of several observations.
A company that does not know how to invent its tomorrow, that does not know how to innovate will always have a more complex future than a company that evolves with its market, that reinvents itself. Companies that have been able to reinvent themselves have weathered the pandemic better.
Innovation is more than a need; it is a necessity to bounce back and follow the changes in customer habits, and the new positioning of competitors.
The second observation she makes is that many business leaders see innovation as something inaccessible. A luxury, or something complex, that is reserved only for large groups, according to them, and that rhymes with technology and digital.
Through her research and market research, Marie STUTZMANN sees the potential of her business project. It is quite possible, even useful to link innovation and business with anthropology as a sesame. It identifies 3 types of behavior in the face of novelty.
The first is rejection, when he is faced with something new, which he does not know and understand right away. This form of resistance is quite common. The second is the hybridization of habits with novelty. The third, finally, is absorption, acceptance. Anticipating the conditions of this acceptance is key to reducing the risk of failure of an innovation. But this approach is risky, as it is difficult to anticipate customer reaction.
Angle 9, a successful innovation is an adopted innovation
For Marie STUTZMANN, a successful innovation is an adopted innovation. With Angle 9, she offers a different approach to her customers, to succeed in creating an innovation that makes sense for users and consumers, and becomes a thriving business. It does not begin by looking for the concept from the outset, but first by starting with the in-depth study of humans that are consumers to better understand and anticipate obstacles.
In her anthropological approach, she will therefore look both at what consumers say, but above all observe what they really do in a natural environment. Often, there is a serious gap between words and deeds. This allows him to see the meaning that these people put into what they do, to better understand their behavior. By deciphering the daily life, beliefs and shortcomings of each, it is thus better able to detect potentialities.
You have to Understand to Undertake. Anthropology is a field science, it is necessary to understand both the visible part of uses and habits, but especially the invisible part, which explains why people do this.
The role of Angle 9 is then to understand what is happening to detect and decipher the angles. Having a new point of view, especially that of the consumer, allows us to see things from a different angle. For a company, this helps to find innovative, viable, profitable, but above all sustainable solutions.
Do not work on the desire for a fair business, but on the real need, the challenge of Angle 9
The recipe for good innovation includes several factors. According to Marie STUTZMANN, we must not just take into account the market to combine business and sustainable development. To combine human business and development, we must start from real needs without making new desires that would be gadgets.
In the accompaniment offered by Angle 9, the goal is not to create something useless. It is a question of finding the novelty that will be a nugget, then to design new products in eco-design.
The scheme is quite simple: everything starts with the human and ends with the human. Doing this anthropological work of immersion is essential to avoid doing long market studies or UX design that would not be totally in line with reality. This work, in collective intelligence, then makes it possible to have better results.
Throughout her accompaniments, Marie STUTZMANN has identified two scenarios when she intervenes.
The first is a customer who already has an idea for a new product, service or experience, and believes that this idea will be profitable for the company. In this case, Angle 9 does a study of acceptability and observes consumers, which makes it possible to adapt the idea. And this both in its form, as well as on the positioning, the pricing, the meaning of the product. All this makes it possible to anticipate the factors of acceptability in advance the adoption of the customer’s customers, and to succeed in the marketing without problems.
The second scenario is a customer who already has an offer, but is struggling. He then called on Angle 9 to develop a new technology and bounce back faster. In this case, Marie STUTZMANN explores the possibilities to identify the gaps, the voids, in order to propose the first concepts. Angle 9 thus highlights the conditions of adoption to increase the chances of success, the heart of its activity.
Angle 9, innovation for all
The services offered by Angle 9 are not only intended for large groups. His approach is aimed at all sizes of companies, because the need for support in the development of a new technology or innovation happens to a young start-up as well as to a larger company.
Innovation is not only a matter for large companies, small structures also have an interest in being accompanied, or even more, because they have no hindsight to reinvent themselves.
Since its inception, Marie STUTZMANN has supported nearly 60 innovation and reinvention projects. Projects that respond to different issues:
- “I want to find opportunities for innovation”; which triggers an exploratory approach
- “I have an idea, I want to consolidate it”
Inventing oneself from the inside to reinvent oneself through an organizational innovation approach; it is a work on the company as such to better organize, from an internal point of view.
Its support has been acclaimed by Carrefour, Air France, MAIF, SEB, Somfy, the French Red Cross and SMEs such as Oledcomm, Boostheat to name just a few examples.
Local actions to consolidate
More locally, Angle 9 brings its expertise to the Couach group, a shipyard located on the Bassin d’Arcachon. The project, started a year and a half ago, aimed to optimize the activity of the company that produces high-end boats and yachts. An observation made by the management of the group of a need to reinvent itself. But how, and especially on what aspect? Reinventing oneself, in particular by working on the product itself, but also on the organization within the company (employees, processes, solidarities). For this, Marie STUTZMANN worked with all the company’s departments so that everyone learned to work together, grasping a concrete transversal subject which is the planning of boats to concretely learn to work together. De-siloter, equip, involve.
She also had the opportunity to work with CYC33, a hotel chain present in Nouvelle-Aquitaine. To find solutions to attract millennials to these institutions, Marie then conducted an anthropological field study by immersing herself day and night in institutions appreciated by young people. These experiences then allowed him to find leads, levers to exploit to seduce these customers by building a new meaning and an offer for millennials.
With all the experiences lived during its activity, Angle 9 knows how to identify the problems that are not the right ones, and avoids the company to run into a wall.
Usually, studies focus on the top of the iceberg, but also on the tip of the iceberg, the concept must hit the mark. It is always necessary to make adjustments to increase its chances of success.
Offers that adapt to all Angle 9 customers
Angle 9 offers tailor-made offers, which adapt to the needs of each customer. For the smallest structures, Marie STUTZMANN offers a business booster, punctuated by a dive into the daily life of the company. But also with customers to have an offbeat look and a highlighting of the most important issues. Then she selects one that is worked with the team, in order to solve it, and allow the company to reinvent itself.
Focus on one thing at a time, rather than wanting to solve all the problems head-on, and not getting there.
Packages and prices are tailored to each business, as none have the same needs. And today, Marie STUTZMANN, based in Bordeaux since the 1990s, wants to support Gironde companies in solving their problems. Because at all times of the company’s life, issues emerge, and can help to innovate, to evolve.
In his eyes, Bordeaux is a land of business with opportunities and a certain dynamism. But also an opaque territory where making its place is difficult. However, there are opportunities; as an intervention in May with tourism experts on behalf of Charente Tourisme. An event that she wants to immerse herself in the territory, and an intervention above all as an anthropologist, to understand what people do in terms of sustainable tourism, and what they do not do. Carry out actions, favor practice rather than theory.
An awareness with the pandemic
During the pandemic, Angle 9 has encountered two types of reactions from its customers. On the one hand, those who have chosen to stop the accompaniment, for fear of the future. But the most important part has been the increase in requests the company has received. Indeed, 2020 was his best year, with many requests to evolve the business, to take the turn quickly.
In addition, she works with designers on fixed-term and permanent contracts with eco-design skills. She also works alongside partners… And never stops trying to reinvent Angle 9 to better meet customer needs.
“I find it essential to involve all the company’s teams in my approach; even if I had 100% acceptability with consumers, I must be able to have 100% with the teams so that we can move forward together serenely.”
In its operation, Angle 9 does not have physical offices. Work is done remotely, in the age of time; but the work is punctuated by seminars that take place every 3 to 4 weeks, with meetings; sport; and working together. This makes it possible to forge links, while remaining autonomous; “embarked in the sailboat Angle 9, but where everyone knows how to take his canoe, and advance alone when necessary.”