Designing Operating Models

This project explores the space between strategy and execution.   The concept of a target operating model is widely used in business and amongst consultants.   This project aims to understand what "operating model" means and disentangle the term from concepts such as "business model" and "strategic plan".  The hope is that the concept will help managers convert strategy into an effective operation or use an understanding of operations to improve strategy.

The work has focused so far on developing a "teachable point of view" on the topic of operating models:

  • What is an operating model?  
  • Why might managers benefit from creating operating models?  
  • How to design operating models?  

At this stage, the main insight is that there are thousands of design decisions that need to be made to set up an operating organisation.   These decisions are often made by different functions without understanding how well they are aligned with each other.   An operating model is a way of visualising the operational implications of the strategy, so that the detailed design decisions can be taken with a richer understanding of how they fit together as a whole. 

 Find out about our open programme: Designing Operating Models