ING helps building a sustainable business model

Together, they initiated Building Real Estate, an event for the construction and real estate industry to take Sustainable Business Design to the next level.

The Challenge

Before developing new products or services, it is important to know who your customers are and what needs they have. After all, they are the ones who will be purchasing your product or service. If you lack insights, you risk investing a lot of time and money in developing a product or service for which there is no demand. ING Private Banking was aware of this fact and wanted to improve its products and services for customers. However, therefore it was important to study who the customers were. ING Private Banking started a Customer Discovery Project in co-creation with Stay Future Proof. This would lead to the creation of personas and gaining a clear understanding of their needs.

Stay Future Proof's approach

ING and Stay Future Proof decided to jointly organize a strategic input session for organizations in the construction and industry industries. Designing such a day is always done in co-creation. Leontien mentioned, “You really work in co-creation with Stay Future Proof. Together, we conceived what we wanted to do during the session and how we would organize the day.” Leontien and Eefje first decided on the participating organizations. These came from the network of both ING and Stay Future Proof. The aim was to bring together a diverse group of people from different organizations, with varying numbers of employees and at different stages of the entrepreneurial lifecycle. Leontien said, “Bringing together different perspectives adds value. The participants found it valuable that we brought together large parties, scale-ups and startups. They can learn a lot from each other.” All participants were called in advance to ask about their expectations. Subsequently, everyone received a digital invitation and a visual introduction booklet, introducing all the participating organizations.


The topics that would be worked on during the session were also thoughtfully considered. It was decided to start the day by analyzing the context of the construction and real estate industry. What changes are occurring in the industry, what are new trends or developments? And how do these affect the organizations? With these insights, the participants then proceeded to formulate a vision for the industry as a whole. What does success look like? What is the vision or goal that they collectively want to work towards? Finally, the changes that need to take place to achieve this vision were considered. The participants formulated the current situation and the desired situation.


All exercises were conducted using a pressure cooker approach. In tight time boxes of about 1.5 hours, Stay Future Proof presented a brief keynote, participants worked on the exercises and the insights were then presented back. This was all done under the guidance of visual presentations and canvases. Leontien: “Working with Stay Future Proof is very hands-on. They also use dynamic presentations. These consist of many slides, but with lots of visuals and little text. The Strategy Designers really engage with you through storytelling. It’s much less model-based and much more visual. It’s somewhat of an ‘I have a dream’ philosophy.”


Organizing Building Real Estate United has led to several great results. The participants were enthusiastic and expressed interest in participating again. The session was a fun and accessible way to share knowledge within the industry. Challenges within the industry were discussed and found to be experienced by various organizations. This dialogue made the participants feel supported, not isolated. It instilled confidence to collectively make a difference. For the participants, it was very valuable to do this on an industry-wide basis. Leontien said, “The feedback we received from the participants was very positive. They found it educational and appreciated coming together with different organizations. The diversity in the size of the organizations, their histories and stages of growth facilitated valuable discussions.”

“During the session, we sat down with our clients, which provided us with a lot of insights. We achieved our intended goal!”
Leontien de Haan

Directeur Building & Industry ING Grootzakelijk regio NoordWest Business Banking NL

Have you become excited?

Carolijn Coolen
Strategy Designer

Understanding of the different groups of customers

ING Private Banking started a Customer Discovery Project in co-creation with Stay Future Proof. This would lead to the creation of personas and gaining a clear understanding of their needs.

Mindset transformation among SNS managers

The Customer Team Managers teamed up with Stay Future Proof to enhance collaboration among the managers, despite the physical distance between their work areas.
how we play
How we play
what we do
What we do
customer successes
Customer successes