Tuesday, July 1, 2008


By: Breene, R. Timothy S., Nunes, Paul F., Shill, Walter E.,
Harvard Business Review,
Oct 2007, Vol. 85, Issue 10

Our research and many years of experience working with leaders in large organizations confirm that CEOs are formally handing the reins of strategy execution to individuals known by a variety of titles but with increasing frequency as "chief strategy officers." In the past few years, the number of CSO appointments has surged. Interviews with executive recruiters point to the growing prevalence of this role in many industries, and CSOs are already serving large multinational companies around the world.

In the medium term, CSOs add value by building world-class strategy development and execution capabilities within the company. Many strategy chiefs are creating departments specifically for this purpose, hiring people with strong strategy-related skills and competencies (business development, competitive analysis, M&A expertise, and the like).

R. Timothy S. Breene is the chief strategy and corporate development officer at Accenture. Paul F. Nunes is an executive research fellow at Accenture's Institute for High Performance Business. Breene and Nunes, both based in Boston, are coauthors of "Selling to the Moneyed Masses" (HBR July-August 2004). Walter E. Shill is the global managing director of the strategy practice at Accenture. He is based in Washington, DC.

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