Our Research


Our Research

While the worlds of academia and business largely agree on a basic framework of strategy execution and enterprise-wide change management, the broad consensus is that the failure rate for such programs approximates – and in some studies exceeds – 90%.

As an academic and consultant to corporate leaders, professor Barnwell remained curious: assuming that the basic frameworks weren’t to blame, what else is contributing to this astounding rate of failure? More importantly, what could CEOs and their senior executive teams do to help assure that their companies weren’t counted among the failures but among the winning 10%.

To answer these questions, professor Barnwell launched a multi-year study which included undergraduate and graduate researcher assistants from CUNY Baruch College, UC: Berkeley, University of Chicago, Harvard, MIT, Northwestern, Stanford and the Wharton School of Business.

The study began with informal discussions with a number of current and former chairman, board members, CEOs and CFOs from NYSE and NASDAQ-listed corporations throughout the Northeast.

At the same time, the research team conducted a thorough review of the existing literature… essentially analyzing the seminal writings in strategy execution and change management authored by leading academics, consultants, senior executives, and many of the corporations themselves.

To further explore initial findings and hypothesis, we revisit participating companies and executives for more pointed and direct conversations about the use of specific tools and methodologies.

Potential best practices are then identified and refined with the help of participating companies which host professor Barnwell as a Scholar-In-Residence (SIR) over a period of months. As an SIR, professor Barnwell reviews the participating company’s existing strategy execution methodology and performance while field-testing best practices. As host to professor Barnwell, participating companies benefit from the latest thinking in strategy execution and change management.

Initial findings and best practices are initially shared directly with participating companies and then within a series of executive briefings, whitepapers and other publications with the general public. Professor Barnwell’s forthcoming book, Lead, Follow or Get the Hell Out of Our Way: Driving Rapid and Lasting Strategic Change (Fall/Winter 2011) will also detail best practices.

If you or your company would like to learn more about participating in our research, please contact Robert at Robert@robertgbarnwell.com, by telephone at 917.771.4628, or by using the contact form within this website.

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