Sometimes breaking the rules can become the only way to success. As Kishore Biyani, CEO of a rapidly evolving retail company of the Indies, explains: in a company someone should retain the Kama (creative spirit) and Yama (control) in balance for the sake of a positive retail experience.
Once he tried to mimic the appearance and visual standards found in supermarkets of the West -those ones with the bright lights, the well organized corridors and clean shelves- in order to set his stores appropriately, all he finally achieved was to make the whole buying experience sterile.
The worst possible scenario came true, as he unfortunately realised, that while consumers could walk easily through the aisles, subsequently they used to immediately move towards the exit. That was the time he decided to throw convention out of the window, by taking some difficult decisions based in the awareness of cultural differences.
He decided to interrupt the ordinary series of shelves, to use irregular aisles and disarrange the product placement. He stopped selling polished apples and left fruit and vegetables on their soil. He finally came to the conclusion, that in his case all that customers wanted wasn’t a neat self, but the noise and the mess reminiscent of the quality and freshness of the producers’market.
You can find the story and many others in that great book: Caspian Woods, Devil’s Advocate. The 100 Commandments You Must Break in Business , 2012