Delivered a Remote Innovation Strategy Alignment Programme for Senior Leaders

We designed and delivered a strategic alignment Programme for senior leaders at Target Corporation to create consensus on a unified innovation framework and platform. 

Background

Target Corporation is an American department store chain, the 8th largest retailer in the US, and a component of S&P 500. Their global turnover in 2021 was $96B.
Target is a leading global consumer retailer with thousands of stores, a global capabilities centre abroad and more than a dozen sourcing offices around the world. They are an innovative and future-thinking organisation, running innovation initiatives from technology-focused exploration programmes to startup accelerators and capability development programmes.

Brief

Innovation has for a long time been a key driver of growth for the retailer. Over the past decade, they’ve made some notable acquisitions across the retail value chain, namely in the online delivery service and cosmetics retail areas.

But with the world-changing faster and more unpredictably than ever, they know that the organisations who win must continue to transform and innovate from the inside in order to adapt and thrive.

The global retailer asked us to help have generate cohesion between innovation leaders and create consensus on a unified innovation framework and platform for the broader organisation

Approach

Drawing on our expertise in corporate intrapreneurship, we aimed to achieve the following objectives:

  1. Align senior stakeholders around the retailer’s current innovation strategic direction and landscape, what’s working well and where the barriers are.
  2. Identify a high-level roadmap of principles to focus on based on a common understanding of the organisation’s drivers, challenges and needs.

A series of workshops were run on Zoom conference calls, with multiple teams collaborating using virtual whiteboarding tool Miro.

Bespoke Workshops Design

We worked with stakeholders to understand the innovation systems they employ today and designed a bespoke workshop process built around them.

The workshops covered two broad areas:

  1. Building mutual consensus on a strategic innovation framework, with guiding KPIs to drive and incentivise innovation across the organisation.
  2. Mapping the current and future state of Innovation at the retailer, identifying the opportunities for collaboration between its different innovation units.

Initial Stakeholder Insights

In advance of the workshops, we ran a survey across their innovation leaders to gather their individual perspectives on their current state of innovation.

We used the insights as a starting point for the workshops, shedding light on the different and often complementary perspectives across departments and functional units.

Workshops Setup

We set up the workshops journey using the virtual whiteboard tool Miro, where teams would collaboratively work on a series of structured exercises.

Using our experience in sprint delivery and facilitation, we designed the whiteboard to help teams quickly visualise and apply innovation concepts.

Workshops Delivery

On the days, teams joined Zoom conference calls, where we fluidly transferred them between plenary sessions and breakout rooms with their teams.

Outcomes

By the end of the workshops, our client achieved a unified vision of the strategic imperatives for their innovation efforts.

This served as the starting point for a wider, more tactical and practical discussion about their roadmap and how to evolve the company culture to leverage a stronger innovation mindset.

How does leaders alignment help innovate effectively?

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