The Brightline Initiative and HBR-AS Global Survey Report Highlights How Culture Beats Structure

NEWTOWN SQUARE, Pa.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–lt;a href=”” target=”_blank”gt;#brightlineorglt;/agt;–Research conducted by Harvard Business Review Analytic Services, in
association with Brightline™ Initiative explores how organizations can
change their way of working to improve strategy execution. The report
titled “Testing Organizational Boundaries to Improve Strategy
” is the result of 1,636 executives surveyed worldwide on
their strategy implementation capabilities.

The report sheds light on “strategy implementation leaders” that can
quickly adapt to meet new or unexpected market, competitor, or customer
needs. Organizations that are implementation leaders are much more
successful and achieve 80% or more of their strategic goals. One in five
organizations are classified as being implementation leaders. Most
organizations are implementation “laggards” that miss their strategic
targets year after year and as a result, their financial situation

The report highlights the best-practices of implementation leaders that
other organizations can adopt. These high performing organizations
foster engagement, provide coaching and reward collaboration. They also
take great strides in creating distinctive cultures that minimize silos,
encourage cross-functional work and use decentralized decision making.
80% of the high performing organizations agree that a culture of
collaboration must be actively pursued and rewarded. For 77% of the
implementation leaders, their organizational structure helps them carry
out strategy, which is almost as many as implementation laggards (63%)
who express that their organizational structure hinders their ability to
execute. Realizing that culture beats structure, leading organizations
focus on building a winning culture, over perfecting their org chart.

Ricardo Vargas, the Executive Director of Brightline Initiative stresses
the importance of the research. “The organizations that are able to
transform themselves and win in the market place have built a great
culture, and not just a formal structure. It is the culture, not
structure that motivates people to achieve transformational results,” he

Edivandro Conforto, the Head of Strategy Research at Brightline
Initiative adds, “This report shows that among the main reasons some
organizations are more successful than others in bridging the
strategy-implementation gap is their effectiveness at decision-making to
quickly adapt to new or unexpected market changes, competitor moves or
customer needs by fostering a culture of collaboration, engagement,
purpose and accountability.”

“To combat siloed ways of working, successful leaders need to create
incentives and forge processes that encourage and reward collaboration
across organizational boundaries,” said Alex Clemente, Managing Director
of Harvard Business Review Analytic Services. “This research
demonstrates the extent to which structure can enable or prevent
organizations from executing their strategic goals. Since so many
organizations fail on execution, senior executives should consider
whether this is an organizational blind spot.”

The full report, Testing Organizational Boundaries to Improve Strategy
Execution, is available for download at Brightline’s online
resource library

About Brightline Initiative

The Brightline™ Initiative is a coalition led by the Project Management
Institute (PMI) together with leading global organizations dedicated to
helping executives bridge the expensive and unproductive gap between
strategy design and delivery. Learn more at

About the Brightline Coalition

Project Management Institute (PMI), Boston Consulting Group,
Bristol-Myers Squibb, Saudi Telecom Company, Lee Hecht Harrison, Agile
Alliance, and NetEase

Academic and Research Collaboration

MIT Consortium for Engineering Program Excellence, Technical University
of Denmark, University of Tokyo Global Teamwork Lab, Blockchain Research
Institute, and Insper


Brightline Initiative Contact:
Dr. Edivandro Carlos Conforto
of Strategy Research