Teaching PCN Analysis

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Are you interested in teaching Service Analysis, Design, and Innovation?

PCN Analysis provides course material that is interesting, substantive, and very applied.

You can teach it on its own or as part of a course on Customer Relationship Management, Service Operations Management, or Service Marketing.

How much course material do you want? A few class sessions? A course module? An entire course? Here are some ideas about how to proceed…

Introduce PCN Analysis in two or three class sessions

It is possible to introduce PCN Analysis two or three (60- to 75-minute) class sessions…

Details...

Resources:

Session 1 – Introduce PCN Diagrams

Student preparation for session 1…

  • Have students read Chapters 2 (Understanding Services) and Chapter 3 (Creating PCN Diagrams).
  • Optionally assign Chapter 1 as well, which is interesting but not essential.

In class…

  1. Review slides for chapters 2 and 3. This covers what service are, and how to create PCN Diagrams.
  2. Based on how much time you have, have the students create a PCN Diagram for a university course involving two entities: an instructor and a student. Or, create the diagram as a class. Or, just show them a PCN Diagram. Examples are givin in the “Higher Education case study” chapter of Essentials of Service Design.
  3. Discuss elements (steps) of the course-process design in terms of efficiency, scalability (ability to increase the number of students), and customization (ability for students.

Session 2 – Practice exercise

Student preparation for session 2…
Have students prepare (in teams or individually) a PCN Diagram for an assigned business. Options include:

  • The restaurant service process described in the Benihana of Tokyo HBS case (#673057)
  • The patient experience described in the Shouldice Hospital LTD (Abridged) HBS case (#805002) (Note that a PCN Diagram for Shouldice is shown in Chapter 17 – Healthcare case study.)
  • An assigned service process that students would be familiar with, which involves interaction and independent processing. Examples include:
    • the process of caching a check at a bank
    • the process of buying a car from a dealer
    • the process of getting your computer repaired
    • the process of having an eye exam

In class…

  1. Have students share insights and questions from the PCN Diagrams they created.
  2. Start discussion of slides for Chapter 4 (Identifying the Value Proposition).
  3. Ask students to identify the value proposition for their PCN Diagrams.

Session 3 – Process Innovation

Student preparation for session 3…
Have students read Chapter 4 (Identifying the Value Proposition) and Chapter 5 (Strategic Process Positioning).

In class…

  1. Complete discussion of Chapter 4.
  2. Review slides for chapter 5.
  3. Have students identify an enabling innovation in their PCN Diagrams (from the last class session). Ask how the innovation impacts efficiency, economy of scale, and customization.
  4. Similarly, have students identify a relieving innovation in their PCN Diagrams.

You can introduce PCN Analysis in two class session by elmiminating the practice exercise, but I would not recommend it. Students gain much from practice applying what they learn.


Teach a course module on PCN Analysis

For an even richer class experience, you can provide students with an entire course module on PCN Analysis.

Details...

Resources:

  • Student materials: the book, Essentials of Service Design and Innovation (3/E).
  • Class discussion slides (available to registered instructors).

Session 1 – Introduce PCN Diagrams

Student preparation for session 1…
Have students read Chapters 2 (Understanding Services) and Chapter 3 (Creating PCN Diagrams). (Optionally assign Chapter 1 as well, which is interesting but not essential.)

In class…

  1. Review slides for chapters 2 and 3. This covers what service are, and how to create PCN Diagrams.
  2. Introduce the PCN Analysis Exercise with airline example. Assign parts 1-4 to be due two sessions later.

Session 2 – Value and Innovation

Student preparation for session 2…
Have students read Chapter 4 (Identifying the Value Proposition) and Chapter 5 (Strategic Process Positioning).

In class…

  1. Review slides for chapters 4 and 5.
  2. See if there are any questions about the Analysis Exercise due the next class.

Session 3 – Analysis Exercise

Student preparation for session 3…
Complete PCN Analysis Exercise with airline example parts 1-4.

In class…

  1. Discuss student Analysis Exercises.

Teach a Service Design and Innovation course.

For the richest class experience, you can provide students with an entire course on PCN Analysis.

Details...

Cover one chapter per session. Each chapter ends with an Analysis Exercise.

I have found it effective to cover a chapter one session, assign the Application Exercise for that chapter, then review the Application Exercises at the start of the next session (when they are due). For example:

Session 1: Discuss chapter 1 slides. Assign Chapter 1 Analysis Exercise.
Session 2: Review Chapter 1 Analysis Exercises, and discuss any questions that come up. Discuss chapter 2 slides. Assign Chapter 2 Analysis Exercise.
Session 3: Review Chapter 2 Analysis Exercises, and discuss any questions that come up. Discuss chapter 3 slides. Assign Chapter 3 Analysis Exercise.

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