Leaders at a B2B Financial Services Company had a strong desire to explore new areas of strategic growth that would push the company beyond its current core business and predominant M&A growth strategy.
Given market uncertainty, their leaders recognized the need for a hypothesis-driven approach to discover new sources of growth. They also wanted to build an entrepreneurial culture not only to sustain these efforts, but also to inject entrepreneurial leadership into the core business. While the company had strong leaders delivering with excellence on the core, many of these leaders lacked exposure to the process, skills & tools, and entrepreneurial mindset to tackle emerging challenges.
So, they partnered with The Garage Group to build the capability for strategic exploration of disruptive, high growth white spaces, advance six key growth initiatives, and start the journey of an entrepreneurial transformation of their culture.
Watch the video to hear the battle-tested story from a participant in the Lean Growth Bootcamp and read the full case story below.
With the strong support of Senior Leadership, a cohort of 12 leaders jumped into an intense, five-phase, 10-week Lean Growth Bootcamp. They immersed themselves in a world class process: hustling like entrepreneurs; defining disruptive opportunities; exploring new possibilities; and leveraging an efficient, hypothesis-driven approach for building, testing and learning around major growth opportunities.
Each of the five phases of the bootcamp included training on foundational knowledge backed by immediate, initiative-level application, then practice, and coaching to drive understanding and to produce real business results. The Garage Group team led, taught, and coached along the way.
Over the course of the Lean Growth Bootcamp, leaders tackled strategically important business challenges in two-person teams and learned entrepreneurial competencies like operating with a growth mindset, maximizing available assets, and connecting their personal “whys” to the mission of the company.
At a macro-level, they worked through The Garage Group’s Lean Growth Playbook, driving context and understanding for the entrepreneurial value creation process, showing the interconnection between approaches like Design Thinking and Lean Startup.
They gave definition to specific opportunities by applying new skills and tools from Design Thinking and Jobs to be Done to build stakeholder empathy and uncover pain points and leveraging secondary research to augment understanding of each opportunity.
They explored multiple possible inputs to design solutions for each white space – leveraging trends and analogs around the Jobs they were solving for, considering multiple strategic directions, thinking expansively about assumptions using a “what must be true” mindset, and quickly building context and business model canvases to move each direction forward.
Finally, they identified the riskiest assumptions behind their ideas, and built out MVP prototype(s) to test ideas transactionally. Validated learning enabled them to determine whether to double down, continue exploring, re-vector or shelve ideas.
Closing the Bootcamp with a bang, inspired by war stories from battle-tested entrepreneurs and equipped with pitch and storytelling training, they pitched their ideas to a team of Senior Leaders, who were “blown away” by the progress the teams made in 10 short weeks, as well as the quality of the thinking behind the ideas.
“This reinforced for me that learning is something we have to keep doing no matter how good you are in your field. Learning and growing and developing is so critical. And to see them continue to grow was really exciting because now we’ve got really strong people who are even stronger.” – Tara Newboult, VP of Product Planning & Strategy at Worldpay
Through this engagement, The Garage Group and the B2B Financial Services Company created a repeatable approach for innovation and growth (process + tools & competencies + entrepreneurial mindset), produced six disruptive opportunities for the business, and forever impacted the leaders who were part of this initial Bootcamp, enabling them to take these transformative approaches back to their core organization for significant impact.
“Innovation is scary for a lot of companies, and I think where we feel equipped now is that we have a path now on how to innovate. So the fear of doing something disruptive, or sticking to what we know is gone. We feel equipped to just jump into something and really be disruptive with our approach.” – Tara Newboult, VP of Product Planning & Strategy, Worldpay
Leaders from the initial Lean Growth Bootcamp reported having significantly more confidence in the application of the techniques and mindsets. They reported feeling more confident bringing customers to the forefront of the conversation and more able to regard external forces affecting their industry; they have a strong desire to repeat the process in order continue their growth in entrepreneurial leadership.