Transformation Execution, Done Better

by HPA Partner Richard Berger

When meeting prospective clients, I’m often asked about HighPoint Associates (HPA)’s best use cases, and point to many. But false modesty aside, I have been thinking about the transformation work we’ve been leading (and a lot of it) – both transformation strategy development and execution acceleration.

Keeping good company

HPA along with most of the bold name management consultancies specialize in developing high-level transformation strategy. But where we really stand apart is in the execution and results of these strategies. Why are we well-equipped for both the strategy development and execution of business transformation? It comes down to our talent and the flexibility of our model.  

Our consultants have strong strategy backgrounds and expertise that comes with working at a Big Three firm. They also have deep functional and operating experience, which resonates with our clients. Our senior advisors and team leaders have been business leaders heading these kinds of transformations from the inside. In other words, they’ve been there, done that. Because of this, they understand the value of change management and how to socialize that change within an organization, making them uniquely well-suited to implementing a transformation initiative.

Other reasons our clients choose HPA to execute their transformation include:

1. Partnership

HPA puts a premium on collaborative client relationships. That’s because we believe breakthrough ideas come from combining our knowledge and experience with yours. In our experience, developing solutions together nets far better results. And when we partner with businesses on the execution side, we’re taking ownership of the outcomes and re-committing to delivering those results. This partnership ethos, along with an appetite for rolling up our sleeves to drive the “real work,” is why we have a strong track record of helping our clients achieve success.

Speaking of which…

Success Story: Marketing Transformation

HPA partnered with a Fortune 500 consumer products company on a marketing transformation project. The business has an expansive retail presence and was dealing with significant changes in consumer preferences, and in its marketing channels and social media mix. Because of this, they needed to transform their marketing and go-to-market strategies.

Our consulting team brought a combined 25+ years of marketing and growth strategy experience in consumer goods, enabling them to work as collaborative partners with the client marketing leadership team. The team stood up and oversaw multiple strategic initiatives, including reassessing the firm’s positioning with key demographics compared to competitors, and developing strategic playbooks to strengthen the client’s competitive advantage.

2. Experience vs. Value

 With recent acceleration of the cost of capital and macroeconomic deceleration, we’ve seen how cost efficiency and value is more important than ever. Our teams typically bring more senior consultants as hands-on contributors, driving the work forward at a fraction of the cost of traditional consultancies. Transformation projects are highly nuanced and benefit from the experience our consultants bring, and we keep our teams highly curated based on our consultants’ specific industries and functional experiences. Because of their experience, our teams hit the ground running with implementation, saving valuable time, and ensuring a smooth transformation process with a higher return on investment.

Success Story: Organization Redesign

An S&P 500 healthcare firm had undergone a period of unprecedented growth and needed to scale their strategic organizational model to accelerate forward momentum. This meant creating new roles and business divisions to support product-based initiatives, and they were looking to do so at a fraction of the traditional firm cost.

The HPA team was led by a consultant with over 25 years of strategy experience and hands-on expertise in managing large organizational re-design projects, both as a consultant and as an operating executive working with outside consultants. We supported the organization’s redesign across processes, talent selection, and change management. Our team also helped client teams stand up new functions, develop process enhancements, and create a playbook for how the organization would work in the new operating model, including detailed activities for the new functions following the completion of the design work.

3. Flexibility

Client needs frequently change over time. That’s why HPA is never “one size fits all,” where every team is structured similarly. We tailor our approach to the current or emerging needs of our clients, giving them the ability to adjust resources quickly over time. This flexibility helps us provide greater value to clients throughout the lifecycle of a transformation project. For example, we may start with a smaller team to frame up a high-level plan, then add additional resources when moving into the intensive implementation work, and finally flex back to a smaller team (if needed) as we move into client ownership of the transformation program.

Success story: Enterprise Transformation

A private equity-backed multi-site healthcare services company was looking to address challenges from years of aggressive acquisitions without proper integration execution. They engaged HPA to develop an enterprise transformation strategy and roadmap across operations, processes, IT, pricing, and delivery.

The HPA team for this effort was led by a former McKinsey Associate Partner with significant multi-site operating experience. Over the course of the project, the team flexed between six and ten members with a combination of consulting, operating, and turnaround experience. We led analysis, planning, and execution of a cost reduction at the corporate center and partnered with GMs at the client clinics to design, test, and pilot programs to reduce costs and improve operations. Additionally, our project leader stepped into an interim C-level role and led recruiting for three permanent C-suite positions. After roll-out of the pilot programs, the HPA team scaled down with a smaller team staying on to “burn-in” the new processes.

We’re the right partner for your transformation.              

HPA helps clients not only formulate strategic plans but also takes on their execution and results acceleration. In doing so, we can ensure a seamless transition, maintain consistency of the strategic vision and desired outcomes, rapidly solve problems that arise, manage change and resources, learn along the way, and adapt together.

The combination of top-tier, relevant and experienced talent, with a flexible approach to project staffing, provides the highest value for clients. Unlike traditional firms, our business model is not predicated on continuous large team sizes and multi-year billing relationships. We provide exactly what the client needs, when they need it. The “bang for the buck” we deliver is especially relevant during these uncertain economic times.

If your organization would like to learn more about how HPA can help you craft a robust transformation, navigate change successfully, and drive better results for sustained growth and success, let’s chat.

Richard Berger is a Partner with HighPoint Associates and runs the firm’s East Coast office. He joined HighPoint in 2008 and since has worked with clients across industries to solve problems, elevate conversations, and deliver breakthrough results. Prior to joining HPA, Richard spent nearly 20 years in a variety of consulting, operating, and start-up leadership positions. Richard is particularly passionate about helping clients improve and differentiate the customer experience.