The Major Transportation Company

A $12B North American transportation company promoted a senior executive to build and run a new supply chain services unit. This new business unit would help customers manage complex transportation issues such as getting manufactured goods from foreign locations to domestic ports of entry and to their final destination.

Since it was new, no strategy for the business unit existed and there was a lack of clarity within the Company as a whole as to what this business unit could do for them. In addition, the new organization was comprised of a diverse group of people with varied roles. The objective of the leader, a highly experienced executive, was to develop a coherent team and a viable strategy that integrated all of the services within the business unit.

Working closely with the new leader, L&C designed a series of workshops to help the team create a strategy and a cohesive plan that was relevant to the entire business. The client team identified five strategic goals – two internal and three external – and laid out a comprehensive set of initiatives to achieve these. Teams were assigned to each initiative and a rigorous system set up to manage the progress of each: Every two months, the team would meet to talk about progress, challenges and next steps. Over a period of eighteen months, the team members met all their near-term objectives and were well on their way to meeting those for the longer-term.

The clarity of the strategy enabled the business unit leader to create a solid understanding of the value-add role that the new entity played within the Company as a whole. He was also able to use the strategy with clients to demonstrate the Company’s differentiated approach to supporting its customers’ success.