Lars Faeste, Jim Hemerling, Perry Keenan, Martin Reeves

Each [change] leader should be assessed for past performance, current readiness, and future potential across four dimensions: knowledge, soft skills, experience, and motivation and personality traits. Leaders also must have a foundation in adaptability and change leadership. A shortcoming in any one of these can be a warning sign.

However, the right leaders will fill roles in varying ways throughout the journey, from champion of the … [ Read more ]

Archie Norman

Behind all financial failures is organizational failure.

David Küpper, Markus Lorenz, Andreas Maurer, and Kim Wagner

Before the start of any project, management needs to clarify whether the product development plan will follow a radical or conventional approach. Products that involve both new technology and a new market are certainly radical, but categorizing those that involve only new technology or a new market will require judgment. Leaders need to factor in their organization’s innovation expertise. Most breakthrough products that are truly … [ Read more ]

Ray Dalio

Creating a great culture, finding the right people, managing them to do great things, and solving problems creatively and systematically are challenges faced by all organizations. What differentiates [organizations] is how they approach these challenges.

Martin Reeves and Jussi Lehtinen

The effectiveness of a company’s problem solving, as measured along the dimensions of cost, speed, and accuracy, is influenced by five elements: strategy (that is, the core of the company’s problem-solving approach, which drives decisions about the other elements), framing, data selection, choice and implementation of a solution method, and selection of problem solvers. Classical enterprises typically lack a strategy for problem solving. They try … [ Read more ]

Bruce Henderson

Success in the past always becomes enshrined in the present by the over-valuation of the policies and attitudes which accompanied that success.

Jens Harsaae, Ross Link, Neal Rich, Kevin Richardson, and Rohan Sajdeh

We found no consistent correlation between marketing spending as a percentage of dollar sales and either marketing impact or ROMI. Brands that spent more on marketing as a percentage of dollar sales (that is, 30 to 35 percent rather than 20 to 25 percent) did not drive more volume, but they did realize lower returns on their investment. We therefore conclude that spending as a … [ Read more ]

Perry Keenan, Kimberly Powell, Huib Kurstjens, Michael Shanahan, Mike Lewis, Massimo Busetti

The process of identifying and prioritizing stakeholders by their level of support for the change effort and their degree of influence in the organization promotes targeted engagement. We find that in many cases, influential supporters are underleveraged and skeptics underengaged. Effective stakeholder engagement sees business leaders arming influential supporters as change agents, giving them the information and messages they need to influence the organization. At … [ Read more ]

Maximizing the Make-or-Buy Advantage: A Scenario-Based Approach to Increasing Resilience and Value

The context for make-or-buy decisions has become more dynamic, as manufacturers face dramatic swings in demand and the relative costs of sourcing locations. To maximize their resilience and value creation, leading manufacturers use a scenario-based approach to assess the implications of a broad array of sourcing decisions simultaneously.

Getting More Value from Joint Ventures

Joint ventures can be an effective way to enter new markets, gain expertise, increase production capabilities, and expand distribution. Given these potential benefits, it’s no wonder that these partnerships have regained popularity. But despite their advantages, they often fail to deliver value. BCG’s research into what it takes to succeed revealed eight important lessons.

Transformation: The Imperative to Change

As volatility and complexity rise, transformation has become an imperative for most companies, meaning fundamental changes to the strategy, operating model, organization, people, and processes. To transform, companies must take three steps: funding the journey, winning in the medium term, and establishing the right team, organization, and culture.

Driving Growth with Business Model Innovation

Business model innovation is complex and challenging. By understanding four distinct approaches—and the success stories of companies using those approaches—executives can make effective choices in designing the path to growth and uncovering a lasting competitive advantage.

Transforming the Business Portfolio: How Multinationals Reinvent Themselves

Recent research by BCG and Technical University Bergakademie Freiberg investigated the motivations and success factors for business portfolio restructurings. By analyzing the characteristics and patterns of the underlying transformation processes, we developed practical insights on issues relating to the magnitude, speed, and sequencing of restructurings.

Editor’s Note: I was really intrigued by this research.

BCG Classics Revisited: The Growth Share Matrix

The growth share matrix—first put forth by BCG founder Bruce Henderson in 1970—helped companies allocate resources based on two factors: company competitiveness and market attractiveness. More than four decades later, the matrix remains a powerful tool that helps companies manage strategic experimentation amid greater, and more unpredictable, change.

Using Business Model Innovation to Reinvent the Core: Doing Something New with Something Old

Growth is hard to achieve—and creating value through growth is even harder. Embracing comprehensive business-model innovation can give a company a crucial edge over those rivals that try to drive growth by pulling individual levers such as pricing or product extension.

Lean, But Not Yet Mean: Why Transformation Needs a Second Chapter

Many corporate-transformation efforts fail to deliver lasting competitive advantage. BCG has identified the factors that lead to successful transformations—and the common traps that characterize failures.

Managing the “Unmanageable”: Radical Innovation

In recent decades, one of management’s objectives has been to add discipline to innovation. Companies have greatly improved the efficiency of new-product development, and managers have been able to draw on a variety of processes, methods, and tools to maximize the return on their R&D investment.

Unfortunately, these advances have had the unintended consequence of discouraging radical innovation: technical breakthroughs that render existing products obsolete or … [ Read more ]

Designing the Corporate Center: How to Turn Strategy into Structure

Complex global corporations are under unrelenting pressure to create value. But no corporate center can add value without an effective parenting strategy, and no strategy can succeed without an organizational design that translates strategy into operational reality. Learn how to turn your corporate center into a value-creation engine.

The Art of Risk Management

Risk management isn’t just a matter of complex financial models and formal risk-management systems. It is an essential value-creating activity that should inform the strategic debate at every level of the organization. Here are ten basic principles that should govern “the art of risk management.”

Ambidexterity: The Art of Thriving in Complex Environments

Ambidexterity—the ability to excel simultaneously in efficiency and innovation—is a rare but increasingly critical capability in today’s complex business environment. There are four distinct approaches to achieving it, and the suitability of each one depends on the diversity and dynamism of the specific company’s environment.