Growing faster than your competitors and driving enterprise value often requires bold changes to your go-to-market strategy. Business leaders recognize that incremental changes won’t accomplish the type of impact required to outpace competitors every year. For many leaders, developing the strategy to drive growth isn’t the hard part. Executing that strategy and implementing the long change management is where most bold transformations fail. So, what do you do when you have a great plan and want to go big with a new strategy? Set up your executing secret weapon, the Growth Transformation Office.

Value of the GTO


Every great team has a leader on the court that directs their teammates and acts as an extension of the coach.  Think of a great point guard holding up 3 fingers to signal the play that will be run, or the quarterback on one knee in the huddle barking orders.  They are the connective tissue between the strategy being set by the coach and the execution needed by the players to achieve the greater team’s goal.  This is exactly where your Growth Transformation Office fits in with your executive leadership team.  Their charter is to setup detailed project plans, keep stakeholders informed, and hold teams accountable for deliverables and key milestones.  The more complexity your strategy requires, the more important a Growth Transformation Office is in designing a project plan that keeps implementation risk mitigated.  Download this tool to help identify the level of need you have for a GTO in order to execute your strategy.


Value of the CTO


GTO’s bring a faster pace to your organizations ability to execute.  Setting the cadence for weekly or bi-weekly meetings helps drive workstreams forward much quicker than traditional corporate initiatives.  The Chief Transformation Officer’s (CTO) job is to act as the impartial 3rd party and help remove road blocks during these high impact meetings.  Ruling between two stakeholders of equal rank, identifying when to escalate risks, and deciding when to alter the course of action are examples of the role a CTO plays during meetings.  Providing visibility to the key stakeholders while holding the workstreams accountable for driving the project forward makes the CTO’s role very valuable to the organization.


Follow this link for a great interview on sales transformation tips.


Setting up a GTO


So, what do you do once you decide that executing your strategy needs a GTO?


  • Identify who will lead this team and establish your CTO first. This person will need to possess capabilities that include strong project management, leadership, organizational savvy, influence & persuasion, negotiating, and strong process orientation.  Ideally, this candidate has experience running large engagements or implementing key initiatives and understands the political landscape.  They are not afraid to push workstream leads or dig deeper into issues that need to be elevated.  This is probably the most important role to establish within the GTO.


  • Select the number of support resources that the CTO will need to be successful. Scheduling meetings, building project plans, updating weekly charters, and other tasks should be delegated to supporting staff, so the CTO remains free to act strategically.  These resources range from senior level down to more administrative level skillsets.


  • Setting workstream leads that have the ability to gain cross-functional support. Selecting the right mix of leads from sales, marketing, finance, operations or other relevant functions sets the workstream up for success.


  • Ensuring leads have authority and access to appointing the right people to their teams is next. It doesn’t do any good to put the right leaders in place, but then surround them with a team that they can’t hold accountable.


  • Gathering feedback from each workstream team to define the timeline and activities that need to take place in order to be successful. This is where the CTO orchestrates the project plan based on input from the bottom up.


Protecting Your Legacy


Business leaders are in a unique position where they can shape the direction of their organization.  This comes with great opportunity and with great responsibility.  It makes a lot of sense to over-invest resources and make sure that your strategy is going to be executed the way you envisioned it.  Your GTO is this investment to increase your odds of success and leave a lasting legacy of positive transformation.



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Garrett Ryan

Combines data-driven analysis with creative solutions ensuring clients make their number.

Prior to joining SBI, Garrett has served in a variety of finance, tax, and accounting leadership roles.  Using a data driven approach, he has developed tools to help organizations measure and grow their revenue.  Working with Marketing leaders, he has built models to help attribute revenue to key initiatives and track progress against previous norms.  Utilizes cutting edge tools to help visualize the success of product launches into new markets.  Areas of expertise include financial modeling, strategy development, concept implementation, risk mitigation, and creative problem solving.  Garrett’s experience allows him to translate complex information into bottom line, actionable insights.

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