20 Sep 2022

Navigating an uncertain future

What we will cover

  • Engaging business in hypothesis driven strategy (Challenge, Approach, Result).
  • The tool (Growth Navigator, Intended capabilities and Intended functionality).
  • Ortelius methodology.

The Head of Corporate development at a large manufacturing company had the assignment to support business in cross functional/divisional engagements. He was approached by the Industry Manager from Industrial Fermentation who said that they started seeing initiatives from customers which were traditionally in the Food and Agriculture industry but now were expanding their presence further in the value chain and were experimenting with bio-refinery technology on a small scale.

As 30% of the company’s revenue came from traditional oil & gas industry this was considered a threat to the company’s business unless addressed properly.

The Head of Corporate development is a strong advocate for Strategic Experimentation which means formulating hypothesis on future states and testing them with the people and data available in the organization.

Thus a hypothesis was formulated “Sometime in the future, we don’t know when, we don’t know how, fossil fuels will be replaced with renewable fuels as the main energy source of the world”.

  • How are we as a company prepared for this change?
  • Who in our organization can be part of addressing this emerging market?
  • What do we need to do with our product offering if this is true?

The Head of Corporate development knew that for any initiative to be successful it’s crucial that you get key stakeholders in business engaged from the start. The challenge was to go from a written hypothesis to a shared visualization of what this would mean for the organization. At this point Ortelius was engaged to support them in Finding (what data and information was needed), Capturing (the know-how from key business stakeholders), Visualizing (data, information and know-how in a dynamic/exploratory environment) and (providing the data and information necessary to ) Align the stakeholders.

Identify needs

What data and information is needed?


What know-how do we need from key business stakeholders?


Show how data, information and know-how is connected in a dynamic/exploratory environment.


Providing the data and information necessary to align.

Through a set of working meetings a shared model of the current state of Petrochemicals and Bio-based fuels was built from a customer centric perspective. Creating the ability to continuously answer these questions:

  • Which production processes are in play?
  • What is the feedstock?
  • Which processes are shared between Petrochemical and Bio-based fuel production?
  • What product offering does the company have currently, which processes are they used in and how?
  • Who are the industry experts in these areas?
  • Who are our competitors for each process?
  • Who are our customers and which production processes do they have today?

Once this was in place stakeholders could visualize different scenarios based on the model created and create action plans.


  • Engaging and aligning business stakeholders in a shared view on the future.
  • Cross functional and cross divisional scenario.
  • No single stakeholder directly effected; all stakeholders indirectly effected.
  • 30% of revenue at stake unless something is done.


  • Identify stakeholders
    • 13 stakeholders from different parts of business identified as key stakeholders.
  • Visualize and validate hypothesis with stakeholders and agree.
  • Draft could-be scenario (hypothesis)
  • ”What data and information do we need to test the hypothesis”
  • Gather data and information and populate data model.


  • Discovery of “hidden” value offer present in all customer processes highlighted and focused up-selling across all sales channels.
  • Enabling organization to focus on individual customer value offer instead of industry vertical offerings.
  • Strategic decisions to make or buy (R&D vs M&A) in order to fulfil future customer demands.
Feature and capability description of database and tools developed to support the transformation

Growth Navigator

Implemented capabilities

  • Customer centricity – Prototyping scenarios of value offer in relation to customer processes
  • Value mapping – Long term snapshot of value offer mapped to customer needs
  • Knowledge sharing – Enabling data and insights to be shared in the relevant context.
  • Business insight – See what we know and what we don’t know
  • Strategic lens – Input to take strategic decisions

Implemented functionality

  • Enable users to
    • find out which areas are strong and weak in the current business for Bio based fuels.
    • Understand which organization units/people are currently involved in Bio based fuels.
    • Be able to relate processes and sub processes to organizations involved.
    • Allow connection between product offering and production processes.
  • Act as a database for
    • An independent information system for the bio-based fuels task force.
    • Reference point for data and knowledge within the organization.
    • Enable bio-based fuels task force to make future outlook for their field.
  • Create a repository where people could
    • Share project list for long perspective and short-term needs.
    • Hold important information about countries, industries, rules & regulations and competitor / market stakeholders.
    • Share market intelligence and knowledge.
    • Find Gaps to support M&A, R&D and HR processes.

Suggested case: The Operations Leader

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