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Changing direction

The background

To increase its competitiveness, an exchange-traded machine manufacturing company wanted to switch from a product-oriented to a market-oriented strategy. The supervisory board called on the new CEO to scrutinize the corporation’s portfolio. He was tasked with selling off parts of the company that didn’t fit the new profile, and integrating what remained to increase efficiency and create new opportunities for growth.

Metaplan’s assignment

The CEO commissioned us to support him and the organization as it transitioned to a market- oriented strategy and an appropriate structure. In addition, by integrating the company’s different business areas, the CEO wanted to put himself in a position to really influence the organization.

Our approach

Working with the CEO, we first clarified his intentions, then developed new concepts. These were cross-checked in trilateral talks with the rest of the board members, and developed further. We fine-tuned the concept in half-day workshops with the whole board, then moved the process to a strategy retreat. Once there, we evolved common strategic approaches and thought through different development options for the organization.

The outcome was a set of new strategies for individual areas of the firm. To make sure the company got behind the new strategies, we developed storylines for each one and presented these to the supervisory board and executive.

The results

An important result of the restructuring was to identify which parts of the corporation should be integrated, and which sold off. One unit was sold, two were aligned with specific market segments and integrated. Another retained its independence. The changes also saw the creation of company-wide shared service units.

These decisions were based on a desire to align the company more closely with the challenges posed by its customers in the various markets, as well as making it more efficient. To help persuade the players and their contexts to move from a product-oriented to a market-oriented approach, it was crucial that we never lost sight of their diverse ways of thinking.

Aided by the organizational changes and re-orientation of the company, over the course of the assignment we gave the CEO more room to maneuver, so that he could lead his organization more effectively. This despite an initially critical assessment of his opportunities to exert control and an analysis of the power structure in his environment. There followed a board reshuffle and a reallocation of responsibilities.

Contact Person
Dr. Kai Matthiesen | P +49 (4106) 617-0 | E

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