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Effective Execution of Organizational Strategy

Program Overview

Research shows that a large number of organizations fail to execute their strategies successfully, and even smaller initiatives aren’t immune. The problem often isn’t with planning — many strategies are well developed — but with execution.

Effective Execution of Organizational Strategy focuses on the most important factors involved in implementation, including leadership, culture, organizational design, capabilities, and incentives. And it explores those factors as they apply on every level, from individual to team to organization. It provides a well-structured approach to implementation for managers who face execution challenges. Participants will leave with an actionable plan for executing a specific strategy or initiative, and a new set of tools and approaches for overcoming even their most challenging execution obstacles.

Read more about the Experience & Impact »

Effective Execution Highlights and Benefits

In this program, you will learn how to:

  • Consider strategy execution from a range of lenses including leadership, organizational culture, talent management, and capabilities
  • Create a plan for dealing with your organization’s most critical execution issues
  • Understand how to get buy-in, clarify responsibility and accountability, and create proper incentives
  • Learn how to develop and access the necessary resources for implementation regardless of whether they are located inside or outside the organization

Contact Us

Schedule a personalized consultation to discuss your professional goals:



April 9 - 13, 2018$10,750

Philadelphia, PA

October 8 - 12, 2018$10,750

Philadelphia, PA

Download the program schedule, including session details.

Tuition for Philadelphia programs includes lodging and meals. Prices are subject to change.

Effective Execution of Organizational Strategy - Overview

Featured Video

“Effective execution is not just a plan we execute, but it's a whole learning process.”

Professor Nicolaj Siggelkow on Effective Execution of Organizational Strategy

Still considering your options? View programs within Strategy & Innovation or use our Program Finder.

Experience & Impact

Business decisions are driven increasingly by the financials — and having a good grasp of finance and accounting tools can help every corporate manager be more strategic stewards of the bottom line and even forecast the future.

Effective Execution leverages the research and thought leadership of Wharton faculty who teach in the school’s MBA and Executive Education programs. Faculty will share highly actionable tools and frameworks from a variety of perspectives, and provide feedback on your own execution challenges. A highlight of the program is an intensive Strategy Execution Workshop that will help you integrate the week’s learnings and create a plan to implement when you get back to work.

Highly practical and hands-on, this program uses a blend of relevant case studies infused with current strategy implementation techniques, group discussion, and exercises to help you strengthen your leadership capabilities and improve your ability to influence and get buy-in across your organization. Effective Execution is beneficial even if you have an MBA, as it tackles cross-functional and silo-busting issues related to strategy implementation.

Session topics include:

  • The Impact of Culture on Implementation
  • Barriers to Organizational Change
  • Strategic Leadership
  • Implementing Through Teams
  • Cognitive Biases Affecting Implementation
  • Organizational Design
  • Accessing Resources from Outside the Organization

Participant Profile

Participants by Industry

Effective Execution of Organizational Strategy

Participants by Job Function

Effective Execution of Organizational Strategy participants by job function

Participants by Region

Effective Execution of Organizational Strategy participants by region 

Who Should Attend

Effective Execution attracts a diverse group of participants, including global executives in manufacturing, medicine, financial services, and law. The program is best suited for individuals involved with implementing strategies and strategic initiatives. Some experience in formulating strategy is helpful, but individuals moving into a position that requires strategic planning may also benefit because they will have the opportunity to consider the full process of formulating and executing strategy through this program.

Participants leave the program with an expanded network of global peers, a set of actionable goals, and specific tools and skills they can use to better execute strategies within their organizations.

Group Enrollment

To further leverage the value and impact of this program, we encourage companies to send cross-functional teams of executives to Wharton. We offer group enrollment benefits to companies sending four or more participants.

Plan Your Stay


Nicolaj Siggelkow, PhD   See Faculty Bio

Academic Director

David M. Knott Professor; Professor of Management; Co-Director, Mack Institute for Innovation Management, The Wharton School

Research Interests: Competitive strategy, firms as systems of interconnected choices

Iwan Barankay, PhD   See Faculty Bio

Associate Professor of Management; Associate Professor of Business Economics and Public Policy, The Wharton School

Research Interests: Political economy, behavioral economics, field experiments, personnel economics

Sigal Barsade, PhD   See Faculty Bio

Joseph Frank Bernstein Professor; Professor of Management, The Wharton School

Research Interests: Emotional intelligence, organizational culture, team dynamics

Matthew Bidwell, PhD   See Faculty Bio

Associate Professor of Management, The Wharton School

Research Interests: Human resource management, knowledge workers, worker mobility

Saikat Chaudhuri, DBA   See Faculty Bio

Adjunct Associate Professor of Management; Executive Director, Mack Institute for Innovation Management, The Wharton School

Research Interests: Mergers and acquisitions, organizational adaptation, outsourcing, technological innovation

Martine Haas, PhD   See Faculty Bio

Associate Professor of Management, The Wharton School

Research Interests: Global collaboration, teamwork, knowledge sharing, information-technology use, human and intellectual capital

Harbir Singh, PhD   See Faculty Bio

Mack Professor of Management; Co-Director, Mack Institute for Innovation Management; Vice Dean for Global Initiatives, The Wharton School

Research Interests: Corporate governance, corporate restructuring, management buyouts, strategies for corporate acquisitions


I lead the strategic planning process for the National Academy of Medicine. We are a non-governmental organization established in 1863 under a Congressional charter signed by Abraham Lincoln to be an independent advisor to the government. When I took Effective Execution of Organizational Strategy , I had been working for 15 or 16 months on our strategy plan to guide our next five years. I shared my Wharton findings with our president, executive officer, and directors at a senior staff retreat. I led the team on a ‘pre-mortem exercise’ that I learned at Wharton. We imagined five years down the road that our strategy had absolutely failed. What would The Washington Post headlines be? It was such a useful exercise to walk through with my leadership team — it allowed me to highlight the things necessary to have in place — such as making sure you have buy-in-from your leadership and appropriate resources and staffing.

One thing that really stood out in Wharton’s program was the importance of organizational culture — that people have a voice and are engaged in the strategy execution. I also realized that we have a strong culture — as a non-partisan, independent organization driven by science. The question then becomes, ’How strongly engaged are your staff in your culture internally?’ ’How do they operate under those values and expectations?’ That was a huge ah-ha moment for me.

Since the retreat, I have presented our strategy plan to our governing body and to our 2,000 members, as well as reaching out to our various staff to make sure everyone’s on board. I hope that this strategy plan sets up a process to allow us to continue to use strategy to guide our activities, to measure our outcomes, and to benchmark how well we are moving toward our mission.

This program would benefit anybody sitting at the intersection of executive leadership and taking forward their organization’s strategy — where they need to convince both their leadership team and bring along all the staff.

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