We’d like to share a few case studies that illustrate our success stories.
1. Succession Planning, Growth Strategy and Organizational Structure
The owners of a successful 25-year-old family owned business had reached the age of retirement and, while they wanted to continue to play a role, they wanted to take a step back and create room for the next generation of leaders in the firm. Further, the owners wanted to have a clear understanding of the firm’s growth opportunities, and how the leadership team should be modified to support future growth.
We interviewed the senior leaders in the firm as well as key external partners and investors to gain a broad perspective of how the firm was perceived and what its strengths and needs were. Further, a number of growth opportunities were identified through this process. With the information gathered, we debriefed the firm’s owners on our findings and made recommendations regarding how to restructure the firm in order to create the next leadership team and to pursue specific growth areas identified.
Based upon our findings and recommendations, the firm named a new President from within and hired a senior level executive to head up its acquisition team, moved into a new market and has successfully and significantly grown its third party management business. The owners continue to play a role in the firm including guiding and mentoring the new team.
2. Organizational Restructure and Leadership Development
The founder and CEO of a young and highly successful private equity firm felt that the leadership team was not functioning as true leaders of the firm and were spending too much time in the functional areas of the company so that all matters, small and large, were landing in his lap. He felt the team needed to learn how to be better leaders and that the next level of leaders should be given more authority.
We entered into an engagement that included gathering data, debriefing the leadership team, conducting an organizational audit, and designing and delivering a leadership development program.
In gathering data, we interviewed each member of the leadership team including the CEO, created and conducted a survey of the next level of leaders, and had everyone in the company take the Leadership Circle Survey. We synthesized all the data and delivered a half day debriefing report that identified a number of significant areas where opportunities for individual and organizational growth existed. The report was well received by the team and they were all eager and open to learning and change.
The next step was to review the organizational structure. With the findings of the data gathering sources, we worked closely with the head of human resources and the CEO to create a new organizational structure with a new title hierarchy, new reporting lines, job descriptions and delegations of authority.
These changes resulted in three important improvements. First, by delegating authority to key staff members, the company began to significantly benefit from leveraging the talent within the firm. Second, the staff felt that the leaders had really listened to their thoughts and ideas and were energized and fully engaged by these changes. Third, the new roles taken on by the leadership team provided support to the CEO and provided more strategic focus at the enterprise level of the company enabling them to pursue new growth opportunities faster and more effectively.
3. Strategic Planning
The new President of a 125 year-old family owned investment trust determined it was important and necessary to diversify the holdings of the family trust. The investments were stable and producing consistent returns, but the President felt there were concentration risks and that the existing assets were not being used in a way to take advantage of the captured value of the portfolio.
We were engaged to review the strategic plan of the prior year and to perform a full analysis of each asset. We sought to determine how to improve existing cash flow, unlock some of the captured value and make recommendations regarding diversifying the portfolio.
Armed with a thorough analysis of the existing plan, the financial opportunities to unlock captured value of relevant assets and the optimal diversification strategies that we deemed feasible, we presented our findings to the President and CFO. Our recommendations were agreed to and adopted, and efforts are now underway to execute the plan as market conditions allow.
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