Strategies cannot succeed without solid foundations. These often require a clear-eyed understanding and analysis of the broader political, economic and strategic context in which an individual or organisation is operating.
I have worked at senior levels of government, academia, think-tanks, and both private sector and non-profit organisations. These have given me a deep understanding of international dynamics from a variety of perspectives. I use this to help my clients establish which global trends and events matter to them, and which don’t; if appropriate, we then build scenarios and guiderails within which to operate. This knowledge provides the foundation on which to develop, and stress-test, an effective strategy to steer them and their business forward.
“With her rare combination of experience in government, the private sector and civil society, Xenia has a truly comprehensive understanding of the international context and its impact on business-relevant decision-making."
Sir Robin Niblett, Director, Chatham House 2007-2022
EXPLORING GLOBAL TRENDS
AND INFORMING CORPORATE STRATEGY
A consulting and advisory company was supporting a series of strategy discussions for a client of theirs, initially to its Executive Team and, subsequently, its Board.
I was asked to deliver a presentation to both groups. Initially, I assessed the context in which this global company operates and how its business might be impacted by specific trends, including the US-China relationship, changing societal ESG attitudes, and the future of work. Together with another geopolitical expert, I provided the foundation for a day-long discussion with the client to agree its broader corporate strategy. This included a Q&A session with their leadership team that explored in more detail how external events might affect their clients and service providers, and the implications for where and how they operate and for their future profitability.
ASSISTING POST-MERGER ALIGNMENT
After successfully merging three companies, my client was starting the process of operational, cultural and contextual alignment. It wanted to take its senior leaders on a journey that began with the changing operational context and moved through the strategy before considering how to build the company’s culture.
After providing an external assessment of the changing global context, I launched a discussion with the CEO that built upon this context to examine relevant and practical steps to deliver the company’s strategic priorities more effectively. I concluded the session by reflecting on the key insights that emerged from our dialogue.
The conversation created energy among attendees and helped participants from different parts of the organisation to begin developing a common foundation.