Designing A High-Performance Organization for a European Financial Services Firm


  • Global European Financial Services Company facing a growth and performance challenge
  • Aggressive performance targets to grow top line 2.5 times in next 5 years
  • Company lagging competitors on profitability
  • Strong and deep organizational silos
  • Customers frustrated by multiple touch points
  • Internal focus
  • Duplication of resources, processes, IT systems
  • Optimizing the parts, not the whole


  • Aligned senior leadership team around strategic imperatives and organizational requirements
  • Sub-groups of senior team used "future back" planning to align strategic imperatives
  • CEO used new organization design and future back-plans for re-contracting with each senior team member
  • Each senior team member responded to delegation at offsite workshop where agreements were built
  • Plans put into action through short-cycle performance projects focused on strategic imperatives and testing the assumptions of the new organization (e.g., cross-functional key account teams)


  • Growth targets achieved for the first year
  • New operations unit had full mandate to drive needed changes to improve productivity
  • New organizational model got kick-start from success in short-cycle projects
  • Positive response from customers when they were assigned one contact for operational issues
  • Senior team dramatically shifted the way it spent time, both in and out of meetings, from internal to external business