The CEO’s vote of confidence and a strong résumé confer the credibility that gets you a fair hearing as a top strategy executive. Therefore, he worked with the heads of Sales, Marketing, M&A, and Strategy Development to address stalled growth, identify attractive new markets, and formulate aggressive acquisition strategies. Johnson & Johnson is a company of enduring strength. “What we’ve been doing isn’t in line with the company’s strategy—and we need to fix that.” Someone in your organization has the mandate to walk into any office, speak those words, and spark some sort of transformation. Direct interaction with and feedback from the troops is essential for CSOs to keep their companies agile and their strategies flexible. We rounded out the research with in-depth interviews of chief strategy officers from various industries and backgrounds. He or she must be that person who, in the CEO’s stead, can walk into anyone’s office and test whether the decisions being made are aligned with the strategy and are creating the desired results. What is their mandate? Nowadays, Schreiber says, the successful creation and execution of strategy requires not only good processes but also the ability to make quick decisions. In short order, the health care firm began to enter the new markets, and people who had been hesitant to do business with the financially ailing organization gained confidence in it. Group Accounting; Taxation; Treasury “Money is made executing, not strategizing,” reported one chief technology officer, who is also responsible for strategy at his professional services firm. Paying a contract CSO less than $49,000 for 6 months minus benefits is a reasonable alternative to hiring a full-time executive level W-2 employee. Some companies, including AIG, Kimberly-Clark, Motorola, and Yahoo!, have discovered a way to fill the execution void: hire a chief strategy officer. Miles Interim Dean, That’s the traditional model, after all—vision, planning, and directives flow from the very top, and people at all levels of the organization act. In 1980, the average time at the top was seven to nine years; today it is four to five years. You’ve got to use every arrow in your quiver—and you have to be prepared to do so again and again.”. While the potential benefits are clear, bringing on a CSO is not without its challenges. Board of Trustees: Joseph Neubauer, Chairman (view bio) President: Robert J. Zimmer (view bio) [collapsed title=Provost: Ka Yee C. Lee] View Ka Yee C. Lee's bio Dean, The College: John W. Boyer Dean, Harris School of Public Policy Studies: Katherine Baicker Dean, School of Social Service Administration: Deborah Gorman-Smith Dean, Law School: Thomas J. Conant was confident the new CSO would help do the same for the soup company. By the end of 2006, the company had achieved dramatic growth and acquired several critical new businesses. Take for example the classical Chief Executive Officer (CEO) role. But most CSOs consider themselves doers first, with the mandate, credentials, and desire to act as well as advise. As a result, I’m bringing more of a running-the-company kind of approach to the role.”. Black’s attitude and approach to his job map closely to another of our research findings: Most top strategy executives are star players more so than professional coaches. content, Of course, different companies have different strategic imperatives that influence the nature of the CSO role and the type of executive best suited to the task. Management research and ideas to transform how people lead and innovate. CEOs were always expected to take overall responsibility of corporate strategy, in addition to guiding the organisation’s other vital functions (e.g. These are the circumstances that prompt companies to seek out CSOs in the first place, and they are partly why CSOs are drawn to the role. Our research and many years of experience working with leaders in large organizations confirm that CEOs are formally handing the reins of strategy execution to individuals known by a variety of titles but with increasing frequency as “chief strategy officers.” In the past few years, the number of CSO appointments has surged. Our investigation revealed that strategy executives are charged with three critical tasks that together form the very definition of strategy execution. Just as important, the CSO must make certain that those decisions aren’t watered down or ignored as they are translated throughout the organization. financials, investor relationships, corporate image, devising and impleme… For underperforming management teams, private-equity funds are often lurking, ready to make a hostile bid. It’s easy to misjudge the role of the chief strategy officer, in part because the title itself is misleading. But even more important for swaying opinions and conveying authority is having deep knowledge in two functional areas that are central to execution these days: technology and human capital. Hire a CSO, and you help your senior team deliver faster, better decisions while building world-class execution capabilities throughout your company. And while a tiny fraction reported that they influence others through reflected authority—that is, by having the implicit or explicit support of the CEO—we know that the CSO’s relationship to the chief executive is more critical than that figure indicates. They’re nominally and ultimately responsible for strategy, but today’s CEOs have less and less time to devote to it. According to our research, they spend an estimated 39% of their time on horizon two, while 36% of their time is devoted to horizon three, and 25% is spent monitoring horizon one. It’s hard to see a five-year plan through to completion when your tenure is likely to be less than that, but that’s the situation CEOs find themselves in today. The reality is far more urgent, however: One-third of our survey respondents went so far as to describe their companies as “under siege.” Most characterized their industries as highly volatile. More than half the CSOs in our survey said they are spending more and more time looking at issues within these domains, which aren’t traditional strengths of strategists. All executives split their time to varying degrees across three strategy horizons—usefully defined in Mehrdad Baghai, Stephen Coley, and David White’s The Alchemy of Growth to mean extending and defending the core business in the short term (horizon one), building emerging businesses in the medium term (horizon two), and creating viable options for the long term (horizon three). Web Login. From day one, the CSO, by being the go-to person on all strategy matters, can focus and speed up decision making. That meant the heads of Sales, Marketing, M&A, and Strategy Development would have to report to the CGO. The strategy management challenge has become more and more complicated, in virtually every industry, over the past decade. The Fire Services Headquarters Command (HQ), headed by an Assistant Director of Chief Fire Officer rank to provide planning and management support to the Director as well as policy and logistical support to other Commands. Of course, simply having the CSO title can help: About one-fourth of our respondents said they accomplish their goals through direct authority. Fuller recently announced it was hiring its first-ever CSO specifically “to emphasize and align the key functions of strategy planning, business development, process improvement, and information technology.” And when Marjorie Dorr was named WellPoint’s CSO, the company’s CEO said in a press release that Dorr would be “working with and across all business units to [establish] specific plans, deliverables, and measurable objectives…in order to drive progress and achieve desired results.”, In the long term, the role of top strategy executive can become an effective succession-planning tool. Office of the CFO Organizational Chart (PDF) Address. Get free, timely updates from MIT SMR with new ideas, research, frameworks, and more. Indeed, we found only one who was directly hired from a consultancy. And PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi was in charge of corporate strategy at both ABB and Motorola before being named Pepsi’s senior vice president of corporate strategy and development in 1994; from that role, she moved to president and CFO in 2001 and then to CEO in 2006. At Cadbury Schweppes, Todd Stitzer went from being CEO of Dr Pepper/7 Up to becoming chief strategy officer to becoming deputy CEO of the entire company to finally being appointed CEO—all between 1997 and 2003. “It’s crucial for me to ask, ‘What implicit decisions have we made that need to be explicit? Post a Chief Strategy Officer job to 100 job boards with one submission. Structuring the Chief Information Security Officer Organization. How to Make a Chief Strategy Officer Fit into Your Organization By Don Tennant , Posted May 15, 2014 Patrick Stroh explains how the job of the CSO may depend on the needs of the CEO and the product structure of the company. ... focuses on building capabilities across the organization … Some companies, including AIG, Kimberly-Clark, Motorola, and Yahoo!, have discovered a way to fill the execution void: hire a chief strategy officer. The presiding person leading the business and possessing the highest authority in the company is chairman. CSOs also ensure that the capabilities they help to develop are implemented by managers and integrated throughout the organization. In the medium term, CSOs add value by building world-class strategy development and execution capabilities within the company. Further, as Harvard Business School professor Joseph L. Bower has noted in these pages, iron-fisted control of execution often eludes the top team’s grasp, as line executives seek to define strategy on their own terms. CEOs, grappling with the complexity of doing business in a global economy, are too overloaded to stay on top of strategy implementation. These CSOs carried out activities similar to traditional management consultants. For example, your organization may have a strategy that no longer aligns with your goals. They were transcribed verbatim and analyzed through qualitative data management software. You must sign in to post a comment.First time here? Nearly one-third of the CSOs we polled reported “very high confidence” in their knowledge of and comfort working in these functional areas; nearly all said they are at least “comfortable” with their level of knowledge of these topics. As the science of human health and well-being has grown, we've been able to grow along with it. We didn’t want to get bogged down by this abundance of titles, so we surveyed a sample of large global companies to find executives who were considered—and who considered themselves—the chief strategy executives at their organizations. It’s often easier for an insider to resolve this vision for colleagues. What are our competitors doing? A chief data officer (CDO) is a corporate officer responsible for enterprise-wide governance and utilization of information as an asset, via data processing, analysis, data mining, information trading and other means.CDOs usually report to the chief executive officer (CEO), although depending on the area of expertise this can vary. Indeed, a CSO’s long experience within a single company—specifically, his or her deep knowledge of the chief architects of the existing strategy and its history—can be crucial for building the federation necessary to enact change. We also took a closer look at the increasingly popular “chief strategy officer” title, analyzing the press releases and media coverage of more than 100 CSO appointments to determine how the role is evolving. Our research shows that top strategy executives work for their companies nearly eight years, on average, before being appointed to the role. All rights reserved. And keeping on top of the challenges at a range of interconnected businesses can tax even the most focused and energetic chief executives. “Someone at the center has to bring focus and discipline to the decision process,” says Kimberly-Clark’s CFO, Mark Buthman, or strategic discussions and initiatives will stall and business opportunities may be lost. Chief Marketing officer(CMO) 5. Indeed, chemical company H.B. As a result, the primary focus of the job almost always quickly evolves from creating shared alignment around a vision to riding herd on the ensuing change effort. The COO or the CFO may seem like obvious resources to tap, but there are risks in delegating the oversight of strategy to either. The strategy chiefs we surveyed said they had known the CEO at their companies for five years, on average, before becoming the CSO. In the early 1990s-2000s, when modern corporate strategy was establishing a foothold, senior strategists did not have an individual strategy remit. “I report to the CEO, and I sometimes represent his issues and concerns more directly when I need to. The C-Level titles are the highest titles in corporations or businesses and are given to people who head divisions and disciplines. Chief Business officer 10. What makes them successful? Schreiber and other CSOs don’t just wait for the phone to ring, however: They preemptively take the lead on strategic questions that overwhelmed business-unit heads just don’t have time to deal with. Alignment can bend and then break if it is not continually reinforced. In circumstances such as these, a CEO needs an executive near at hand to share the load and maintain—or regain—control of a process that constantly threatens to become chaotic. “Half the time I spend with the CEO, [we’re talking about] people and cultural issues,” one strategy chief told us. Special Offer. CSOs can also help steer the top team away from groupthink and from focusing too much on past practices and accomplishments—problems that can afflict executives who have worked together for a long while. Office of the Chief Risk Officer 505 Broadway Cardinal Hall, 6th Floor Redwood City, CA 94063 United States. Connect With Us 1350 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Suite 203, Washington, DC 20004 Phone: (202) 727-2476 Fax: (202) 727-1643 TTY: 711 Email: [email protected] The chief strategy officer (CSO) is a comparatively new but increasingly important role in many organizations. The CSO assists and reports to the CEO, and to the CFO in some instances. Indeed, many of the CSOs we interviewed said that both candor and tact were critical for doing their jobs well. Companies are adding CSOs to their management teams (or at least considering doing so) for several reasons. As a result, CEOs are appointing “chief strategy officers”—executives specifically tasked with creating, communicating, executing, and sustaining a company’s strategic initiatives. “Without achieving real understanding and agreement, there will be lots of grinning and backslapping over the strategy but zero change when people get back to their offices.”. A CSO's role is to continuously examine the company as a whole and to have ready answers to critical business questions like: How do customers rate our customer service? What companies should we consider acquiring? Look for CSO candidates with these characteristics: “What we’ve been doing isn’t in line with the company’s strategy—and we need to fix that.” Someone in your organization has the mandate to walk into any office, speak those words, and spark some sort of transformation. Some companies look outside for a CSO, as Kimberly-Clark and Campbell’s did, but that’s not the norm. As senior vice president of strategic planning during Maurice “Hank” Greenberg’s tenure, Schreiber’s focus was on implementing investment decisions and acquiring companies selected by the management team. Countrywide’s Matricciani told us that thorough due diligence on new products and potential partnerships helps her to be persuasive when presenting opportunities to the rest of the company (or when explaining why it should stick to its knitting). A strategy that is clear one day can become fuzzy the next as people and competitive environments change. Many strategy chiefs are creating departments specifically for this purpose, hiring people with strong strategy-related skills and competencies (business development, competitive analysis, M&A expertise, and the like). As Heidrick & Struggles’s managing partner Krishnan Rajagopalan told us: “People take on the chief strategy role because they want to run the business sooner or later. These individuals are rarely abandoned by top executives who recognize their worth. Our findings identified a significant demarcation between whether the CSO was focused on the formulation of the strategy or the execution of the strategy. What Makes a Great Chief Strategy Officer Three things every CSO should think about. To help existing and aspiring CSOs be more effective, and to aid CEOs who think they might need to hire or appoint a strategy chief, we’ve been studying these executives as a class: Who are they? Your CSO will use their expertise and knowledge on your organization to properly adjust your current strategies. Chief Financial officer(CFO) 3. The CEO may need to do a hefty amount of evangelizing and relationship management to get the top team to buy in to this restructuring of the org chart. The chief information officer (CIO) is responsible for Information Technology (IT) strategy to support an organization’s goals and objectives. To make sure decisions align with strategy through all levels of the organization, top strategy executives must be comfortable working at 50,000 feet, 500 feet, 50 feet, and on down. The senior team might need a big-picture view of the strategy, whereas those people actually executing the plan on the ground might need a more pragmatic view. Chief Engineering officer 7. CSOs consider themselves doers first, with the mandate, credentials, and desire to act as well as advise. The broad mix of skills and experience required of a CSO is rare, which makes those who possess this combination highly valued. To explore the role of the CSO, we conducted 24 interviews with CSOs at U.K. companies that are part of the FTSE 100 Index, across a number of industrial sectors. The demands and intricacies of conducting business in multiple cultures, time zones, and political or regulatory environments are exacting a stiff toll on globe-trotting CEOs. For some, that tenure is much longer: In early 2007, Walgreens promoted John Gleeson, a 37-year veteran of the company, to the company’s newly created CSO post. Most of the chief strategy executives we spoke with and studied had significant experience in formulating strategy, often gained at top management consulting firms or through years of strategy-related work in companies—but this was rarely the dominant portion of their careers. (In 2005, he was named AMD’s chief innovation officer. Chief Information Officer(CIO) 4. WellPoint’s CSO, Marjorie Dorr, was plucked from her position as president and CEO of the company’s northeast region, where she had increased membership in the health care company’s plans from 800,000 to 2.6 million. Because he was coming from outside the organization, Kimberly-Clark’s Black told CEO Thomas Falk he wanted to take 60 days to get to know the company better before he signed off on strategic objectives that had been developed before he arrived. Successful execution, therefore, depends more than ever on rapid and effective decision making. “All our divisions have strategic plans, and I’m part of making them happen,” says Janet Matricciani, the head of strategic planning and chief strategy officer at Countrywide Bank. Around 38% of leading businesses operating in European, Middle Eastern and African (EMEA) countries have opened a position for a Chief Digital Officer in their organization chart. CSOs of this type focused almost exclusively on strategy formulation by themselves or with their strategy team. First, they must clarify the company’s strategy for themselves and for every business unit and function, ensuring that all employees understand the details of the strategic plan and how their work connects to corporate goals. The chief strategy executive position, then, is “a huge job” that should be filled only by highly accomplished business veterans. Clarifying the corporate vision can sound like a leisurely activity, but the reality is far more urgent. At other companies, innovation is at the core of the change effort. The Assistant Deputy Chief Management Officer (ADCMO) is the delegated decision authority and principal deputy to the DCMO. Most entered their companies in planning, functional, or line-management capacities and were not tapped until years later for the top strategy post. Our research was complicated by the existence of a great diversity of titles that fit the role of chief strategy officer—more than 90, in fact. AIG’s Brian Schreiber wanted to be the “first call people made every time they had a new [strategic] opportunity.” That way, he could quickly get the right people involved in making a decision—calling on members of the senior team, for instance, or experts in functional areas like treasury and risk management. Interviews with executive recruiters point to the growing prevalence of this role in many industries, and CSOs are already serving large multinational companies around the world. As one of them stated, “It’s very much like what an external consultant would do; the only difference is that we’re internal… A Chief Strategy Officer (CSO) is a C-level executive who develops and executes strategies to accomplish financial growth in a company. Strategy executives are charged with three critical jobs that together form the very definition of strategy execution. To follow through on their mandate, successful strategy executives employ a handful of high-level principles. The CSO must intimately understand what makes … CSOs of this type focused almost exclusively on strategy formulation by themselves or with their strategy team. CSOs handle three critical strategy implementation tasks: One health care company rebounding from bankruptcy in 2005 formulated a strategy focused on growth. “When we’re starting a new business, I’ll help create the business plan, find the right people, do whatever it takes to make the business happen.”. It was the first time Snap had employed a CSO. One-third of CSOs surveyed described their companies as “under siege.”. Account. September 2015 ... establish an information s ecurity risk management strategy, ... the Chief Operations Officer, Chief … They must be able “to tell [the strategy story] in a way people can understand and buy in to,” says Countrywide’s Janet Matricciani. And while in many ways IT is the bailiwick of the CIO or CTO, it’s also a critical domain for CSOs, because technology is critical to virtually every aspect of strategy—for instance, creating new products and services, developing new business models, and improving processes. He’s been the strategy chief under two CEOs at the insurance giant. Chief Communications officer 8. The CSO has to be, in effect, the guardian of that space one to three years out, when the decisions made (or not made) today will show consequences. These leaders develop strategy and oversee functional teams responsible for safety and security, human resources, finance, information technology, real estate and facilities planning, construction, and maintenance, business operations, audit, A chief information officer usually manages a team of IT specialists responsible for maintaining the day-to-day IT operations. And executive recruiters confirmed what our interviews revealed: The search for the right candidate, whether internal or external, takes longer than most CEOs expect—a fact that is particularly frustrating for those chief executives looking to implement a growth or innovation agenda quickly. Or what decisions have we not made that we need to make, because we’re heading down a path and it’s going to be hard to reverse course?’” explains Kimberly-Clark’s Black. A chief strategy officer specializes in creating and implementing an organization's short-term and long-range strategic goals and change management activities. One could easily envision similar conflicts of interest for the CFO. By nearly all accounts, strategy development has become a continuous, not periodic, process. Stanford. Department Links. Executive Director, Corporate Finance . Chief Executive officer(CEO) 2. The chairman leads and influences the board of the directors and chief officers to manage the financial, human, technical and environmental working of a corporation. Vice Chancellor & Chief Financial Officer 200 California Hall Berkeley, CA 94720. But one shouldn’t take the capaciousness of the role to mean anything goes—just slot someone in and let her figure it out. So he also considers himself the point person for assessing whether strategic initiatives, at all levels of the organization, are in line with the company’s standards and objectives. At tech firms, for example, senior leaders must be knowledgeable about every content business—music, movies, books, video, television—as well as the software and hardware needed to make them all work. And finally, CEOs these days must be prepared to respond to an array of voices: shareholder advocates, the financial community (Wall Street analysts, private-equity deal makers, hedge-fund managers), government regulators, legislators, attorneys general, NGOs, environmental activists—and that’s just people outside the company. The strategy chief at a software company, for instance, recalled having to help members of the senior management team realize that their lack of international experience was preventing the company from carrying out its plans to expand overseas quickly and decisively. It is responsible for the operation of the Fire Services Communications Centre, the Fire and Ambulance Services Academy. Chief Strategy Officer (CSO): A chief strategy officer (CSO) is an executive charged with helping formulate, facilitate and communicate an organization's plans for the future. But in many companies, no one’s driving execution. Then consider the nature of strategy itself. Sign up for a free account: Comment on articles and get access to many more articles. COOs and CFOs are too wrapped up in day-to-day dealings. Duncan N. Angwin is professor of strategy and MBA director at Oxford Brookes University Business School in Oxford, United Kingdom. One of them described the role as “getting the facts on the table, coming up with options, evaluating such options and then recommending [the best] one to the business.”, Given the nature of their role, the Internal Consultant CSOs often viewed themselves, as one of them put it, “as a kind of flexible, analytical resource” that was “parachuted in to wherever there was a particular issue that needed additional analytical backing, maybe a bit of objectivity, or at least a slightly more neutral perspective.�. Developing a new product or improving an existing product, planning, functional or. Constantly transforming the way people interact with the business units during the strategy management challenge become! Change management activities supplier relationships facilitate the flow of commerce not including benefits over the ’... And tact were critical for doing their jobs well and less time to deal with be?. 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