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Why did your client say no? Why can't your employees do their jobs? The answer may lie in corporate anthropology.

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This story appears in the April 2002 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Before Cindy Maude started a unit providing women-focused marketing services, she wanted to be sure she knew what she was talking about. So the owner of Lawrence, Kansas, advertising and marketing firm Callahan Creek sent herself and several employees off for a five-day anthropology boot camp. What they learned had nothing to do with Indiana Jones or Margaret Mead, however. Corporate anthropology helps companies relate to their employees and understand their customers.

Marketers use anthropologists' findings to understand how people use and relate to products and services. Business owners find out how employees communicate, learn and share knowledge.

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