Functional strategy solutions

“The main purpose of a functional strategy is to enable the company’s strategy – not to achieve functional excellence.”

The problem: Striving for functional excellence

The role of the functional leader is becoming increasingly challenging: Automation, outsourcing, increased competition, and process improvement have raised expectations for efficiency gains. More severely, functions are often the first ones to suffer from the incoherence of the company they’re in: With every part of the business having different capability priorities, functions face too many conflicting requests and end up stretched thin, unable to help the company build the type of competitive advantage it needs in order to succeed. And, with little guidance from the company as to what truly matters for success, many functions resort to benchmarking their activities against what other companies do and strive to build functional excellence – falling short of the strategic role they are often asked to play.

Striving for functional excellence

Our solution: Translate the company’s strategy into functional priorities

Anatomy of the new functional agenda

Instead of striving to be “best in class” in everything, functions need to focus on helping their functional organization become coherent and “fit for purpose” by changing their portfolio of activities to focus primarily on those that are strategically important to the company and help drive its distinctive value proposition.

At Strategy&, we help functional leaders take on a more strategic role while fulfilling their day-to-day transactional and expertise tasks. We do so by working with them on three interconnected elements:

  • establishing priorities in line with the company’s overall strategy and its differentiating capabilities
  • aligning the operating model to deliver value in line with those critical priorities
  • allocating resources accordingly

Functional leaders need to fully understand the company’s strategy and work across the organization to align their functional capabilities with it. This approach can be a primary source of success not just for the function, but for the enterprise as a whole.

More on functional strategy


SoundBite: The secret to strategy that works

Playback of this video is not currently available

Part 1: Why strategy matters

In turbulent times, your strategy matters more than ever. The world's greatest companies weather adversity and uncertainty much more adeptly by operating from their core strengths. A strategy built on these differentiating capabilities helps you outpace the competition, achieve faster growth, and earn the right to win.

Playback of this video is not currently available

Part 2: Take your strategy from paper to pavement

Far too many strategies fail when it comes time to bring them to life. In fact, more than two-thirds of executives say they don't have what they need to execute their strategy. Find out how your company can avoid falling into the strategy-through-execution gap by asking 3 questions.

Playback of this video is not currently available

Part 3: Transform your company and your industry

Supercompetitors have a special recipe for success. It's fueled by capabilities and it makes these iconic companies so powerful that they're actually influencing and reshaping entire industries. Find out how you can use smart strategy to transform your future.

Follow us