Building an ecosystem of capabilities

Chapter Six

The Comfort Bucket, Thailand


In Chapter 6 we saw how it's not always easy to execute a brilliant behaviour change idea. Comfort One Rinse was a fabric conditioner designed to help families tackle laundry rinsing with just one bucket of water rather than the usual three.

It's notoriously hard to change behaviours to promote sustainability as often habits are deeply ingrained and passed down from generation to generation. There were also constraints in terms of the product packaging and price, which had to stay the same. The ideal solution of the technical Bucket which would measure water volume and rippled walls to give a more rugged edge to wash the clothes was cost prohibitive.

Comfort One Rinse has now successfully been part of a movement to conserve water in Vietnam and across Asia, which you can read more about here:
Want to see more about how Unilever celebrated water heroes and Comfort one Rinse bucket in Vietnam? Check out these videos.


Context is everything


Unearth domain specific insights from specific contexts - as behaviour is inextricably linked to context. In the Comfort Bucket example, it would have been better to visit Thailand and see behaviours first hand as it is only with this perspective that an apt behavioural solution could be designed.

For a deep dive into the importance of context, you can read this report by Paul Bate, Emeritus Professor of Health Services Management at University College London:


Connections with doers

It's important to forge connections with doers – the thought process behind the Comfort Bucket was sound, but it was practically difficult to implement. If you cultivate a network of diverse people you may spark the type of serendipitous collisions we saw in Chapter 2.
Want to find doers to help you execute your ideas? Start here.
In order to build ecosystems of relationships which can help you realise the product delivery, find people who can execute your idea, however unusual they are. If you build these relationships first then this will enable you to execute your idea within the time frame it is needed to thrive.