What Successful Engagements Share

The following are highlights of a few of our clients' biggest deals and greatest successes—and the role we've played helping them achieve their objectives and prepare for the future.

Capabilities for Performance

Over years of research and client work, we’ve identified a few strategies that help drive successful transformational change—any large-scale change, such as going from good to great performance, cutting costs, or turning around a crisis. These strategies include setting clear, aspirational targets; creating a clear structure; maintaining energy and involvement throughout the organization; and exercising strong leadership. We found that a few approaches in each area are most tightly correlated with successful transformations of both short-term performance and long-term corporate effectiveness. We have defined three guiding principles for capability building that leaders should keep in mind:

Strongly linked to value generation and impact

Training programs should build capabilities that have immediate on-the-job applications, so that participants get a clear sense of how their new skills will help bring about quantifiable results.

Implemented at both the individual level and the institutional level

Effective capability building requires the development of specific skills in individual employees, as well as the institutionalization of tools, processes, and management infrastructure to sustain change. Adults learn best through action, experience, and reflection. Interactive learning formats, repetition, and consistent coaching are crucial.

Tailored to the specific requirements and starting point of the organization

A capability-building program must be built around a profound understanding of the organization’s gaps and challenges, thus ensuring that the right capabilities are built at the right levels. From the start, a skill-building program must involve the people who will “own” the capability-building process for the long term. 

Cultivating Innovation

Together with contributing partners, such as the Overseas Development Institute and Princeton University’s Innovations for Successful Societies program, our experts are building a repository of research and case studies on how governments have tackled their most complex challenges through innovation. We foster dialogue among innovators by convening some of the best thinkers from around the world. We recently co-hosted a conference—Challenges of Government: The Innovation Imperative—with the University of Oxford’s Blavatnik School of Government. We also share our research at global events and conferences around the world, including Government Executive’s Excellence in Government and the Open Government Partnership’s annual meeting.