Intrapreneurs in Action

Intrapreneurs in Action - Kristin Buch

Kristin Buch, Senior Director, Public Affairs, NCTA and Graduate of Intrapreneurship Academy, Class 2

In 2018, NCTA – The Internet & Television Association – began implementing new strategies that included a strong component focused on building corporate membership.

When Kristin Buch joined IA Class 2 in the spring of 2018, she knew her project would be involved with this new and bold initiative.

Kristin Buch

The challenge Kristin identified and decided to tackle through her IA project was how NCTA could manage communications with its members more efficiently. Executives of NCTA-member companies have relationships — and, subsequently, many conversations — with various departments within NCTA: industry and association affairs, government relations, technology, strategic communications, legal, research, accounting, as well as the Walter Kaitz foundation, which operates under NCTA’s guidance.

Step one of Kristin’s project was to conduct comprehensive research to examine NCTA’s interactions among its members and various organizational departments. This research confirmed that while there was an abundance of member communications, these interactions were extremely siloed. There was not an effective way for departments and NCTA leadership to know how the organization was communicating with its members.

Through IA, Kristin developed an innovative solution with specific recommendations, which she pitched to her leadership team. She was encouraged to map out a plan, which was embraced by the organization. Over the last two years, Kristin’s project has continued to iterate and move forward. To further this initiative, representatives were assembled from each NCTA department to work together to make her IA project a reality.

The result: NCTA is working towards implementing a new relationship management system where all departments document interactions with members. This new CRM would enable member communication to be accessible and visible across the entire organization, creating a more cohesive and efficient member-facing presence.

Kristin credits IA with giving her the tools, and the confidence, to move her solution forward. “Because of IA, I have more confidence and I’m able to get more traction for my ideas. I had to work in areas I’ve never worked in before, like with our CFO to evaluate the financials of this initiative,” said Kristin. “I have had the opportunity to learn from talented people I would never have had a reason to work with, which have now turned into lasting relationships.”

Kristin’s efforts perfectly illustrate two key intrapreneurship tenets. One: innovation takes time. A two-year timeframe to move an initiative forward is not unusual. And two: innovation is a team sport. While innovation champions are necessary to drive results, the best ideas emerge through collaboration.