Leadership Development for International Expansion

THE CHALLENGE

Meet challenges of new national market.

Best Buy had just purchased Future Shop, Canada’s only national electronics retailer, with hopes of accelerating growth and market share through its first international expansion. Beyond melding corporate cultures, the client found it also needed to address differing national norms as well as questions of brand strategy. A decision was made to maintain the Future Shop brand in Canada while also opening Best Buy stores.

THE SOLUTION

Apply The Winning Formula® and Change Scorecard® to develop talent, overcome roadblocks.
RHR International identified points of connection and strain between the U.S. and Canadian cultures as well as between two companies at different stages in their evolution—one very entrepreneurial and reactive, the other a more mature corporate structure— and with very different operating philosophies. One hundred employees of Future Shop and Best Buy employees from all levels, regions, and functions were personally interviewed.

The U.S. parent decided to keep the Canadian management team in place and hoped it could grow both chains simultaneously. RHR developed The Winning Formula profile to define successful leadership for the new challenges, then assessed and created an ongoing development plan for each of the 20 Canadian executives based on three-hour personal interviews and 360° feedback. These development plans were supported with monthly coaching sessions with RHR consultants, periodic reviews with superiors, and annual 360° evaluations.

RHR implemented its proprietary Change Scorecard to export Best Buy’s successful standard operating platform (SOP) to the Canadian operation and worked with leaders on a monthly basis to solve problems and resolve cultural roadblocks.

THE RESULTS

Leaders meet expansion goals, surpass sales expectations.

The in-depth culture work demonstrated that Best Buy wished to leverage the strengths and knowledge of the Future Shop team and resulted in a mutual respect between management teams that accelerated the integration process. In fact, all key Canadian leaders were retained through the transition. These leaders quickly learned a new SOP and met the challenge of growing two businesses while drawing on shared resources. Future Shop and Best Buy Canada are meeting expansion goals and surpassing sales expectations.

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