How do CHRO’s improve the execution capabilities of the management team? A CHRO can help management connect the dots through multiple functions within the organization as initiatives execute.

Let’s layout a classic scenario, one that many of you who have worked with consultants have experienced. A big-name consultancy comes into ACME Corp because ACME’s growth is floundering. The product suite is stale, competitors are eating into market share and the customer’s experience is dismal. The industry has evolved around Acme. Acme is reeling.

 

The consulting firm pontificates a brilliant product strategy and defensive take out pilots, coupled with standing up a Customer Success function. Everyone agrees on the recommendation. Everyone is motivated to move forward and execute.

 

The problem is, the consultants are packing up. They aren’t “execution” focused. Who is supposed to lead the change? SBI (an execution focused GTM consultancy) has heard this exact scenario from our clients many times. While no one function is charged with leading successful execution, Chief Human Resource Officers (CHROs) are responsible for monitoring the effectiveness of management’s execution. CHRO’s can add value and garner appreciation from their peers by improving the effectiveness and efficiency of management’s execution.

 

Download the Go To Market Resource Management Checklist. This Checklist stack ranks GTM resource management weaknesses, identifies gaps/needs for CHROs to target,  i.e. Leadership Capabilities & Accountabilities Assessment or Executive Talent Search, and identifies whether or not you have included “execution expert” in the CHROs A player criteria.

 

What Must The CHRO Consider?

 

CHROs have many responsibilities when ensuring the management team is equipped to execute. The CHRO must consider where Acme is in its lifecycle. Are the right leaders in place to drive the change needed or corporate strategy? This will require a proactive leadership capability and accountabilities assessment (performed annually). Not all leaders are equipped for execution and this will surface in the assessment.

 

If the unfortunate result of the leadership capability and accountabilities assessment is to go another direction, an Executive Talent Search might be needed. This is not a preferable route. Backfilling a management position takes time. SBI has seen executive searches take 8-12 months. Therefore, great care must be exercised when going this route. A delicate balance between onboarding and offboarding must be arranged. This falls squarely on the shoulders of the CHRO.

 

Go To-Market-Resource Management Checklist

 

Attached, find the full go-to-market resource management checklist, which will help you as CHRO ensure management is equipped to execute effectively.

 

See the first four bullets below:

 

  1. Defined your go-to-market leadership organizational structure.
  2. The go-to-market structure includes a Customer Experience leader.
  3. They have defined the attributes of an A Player executive leader.
  4. They assess the capabilities and accountabilities of your leadership team more than once per year.

     

A Focus On Execution

 

How do CHRO’s improve the execution capabilities of the management team? A CHRO can help management connect the dots through multiple functions within the organization as initiatives execute. They also can help management define success and track the initiatives. Let’s get granular.

 

Successful execution of strategic initiatives requires the following, which CHROs must ensure management is aware of AND documents:

 

  • A detailed weekly, monthly, and quarterly project plan
  • Milestones, with built in check points to run major decisions by the Executive Leadership Team (ELT)
  • Ways to measure success, both leading and lagging indicators, right from the start
  • Projected targets to measure KPIs against
  • Weekly readouts with the ELT to demonstrate execution advancement
  • A business case, staged over time to project revenue lift and investment needed by execution workstream (see below for sample business case)

     

 

Most importantly, successful execution requires leadership. Chief human resource officers need to ensure leaders are execution experts. Strategic plans are worthless without management driving execution efforts like crazy. Therefore, strategic execution starts with the C-Level leadership team – and must be constantly evaluated/monitored by the CHRO.

 

Effective Talent Planning

 

How else does the CHRO ensure that the C-Level leadership team can execute strategically? Talent planning by function. Talent Planning provides the tactical execution plan by function so that the organization is both efficient and effective. In the end, planning helps you put the right people in the right roles. This is a core tenant for CHROs. Having the right people in the right roles drives up retention and inherently will improve execution capabilities.

 

Succession Planning needs to be something the CHRO considers. Talent Programs are organized around a performance-based nomination process. They offer A-Player talent the opportunity to rotate into critical leadership assignments and ultimately be put on a Succession Planning path. Ensuring ACME has enough A players too. Retaining A-players is just one of the levers CHROs must constantly evaluate.

 

Download the Go To Market Resource Management Checklist. This Checklist stack ranks GTM resource management weaknesses, identifies gaps/needs for CHROs to target,  i.e. Leadership Capabilities & Accountabilities Assessment or Executive Talent Search, and identifies whether or not you have included “execution expert” in the CHROs A player criteria.

 

 

Additional Resources

 

Download the SBI App to stay up to date on all SBI News & Press, and for all SBI Content, on the go.

 

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Geoff Schuler

Blends the classical approach to strategy with cutting edge data analytics to help clients make their number.

Geoff is an experienced management consultant with a heavy background in working directly with executive leadership to help achieve strategic outcomes. His experiences range from engaging full executive teams on corporate strategy development, to revamping compensation structures to align with firm  goals. Recently, he worked with the senior executives of a mid-size company to tailor financial assumptions, build, and present a pro forma model that depicted the impact an acquisition strategy would have on revenue and EBIDTA. The company followed the model’s guidelines as they executed on their strategy.

 

Geoff is a CPA and self-proclaimed data hound, whose demonstrated skill set includes: commercial due diligence, go-to-market strategies, market segmentation, competitive analysis, data analytics, development of M&A strategy & all related diligence, financial modeling, and compensation evaluation & restructure.

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