Siemens Energy AG, headquartered in Munich, is one of the world’s leading energy
technology companies. Its portfolio covers the entire energy technology and services
value chain with comprehensive and differentiated products, solutions, and services
comprising fuel-efficient conventional and renewable energies.
Siemens Energy’s power generation service needed to align priorities across product, marketing, and sales with the overall goal of shaping the path to a future of affordable, reliable, and sustainable power generation. It also needed to encourage employees to become one team with aligned and measurable KPIs.
Company leaders determined that Forrester’s Marketing Strategy Compass would be the best approach to align the business strategy across all marketing resources. A cross-functional team worked through the three Strategy Compass levels to align product, marketing, and sales to the overall business strategy.
The company achieved transformative alignment in a complex matrix environment within a year of its formation. This accelerated its time to market and uncovered collaboration opportunities in additional business areas.
Juan Gutierrez, CEO of the global service business unit at Siemens Gamesa; Jens Klingemann, head of marketing strategy at Siemens Energy; and Jason Jermark, VP of service marketing and
sales operations at Siemens Energy have had pivotal roles in leading the formulation of
the marketing strategy and annual KPIs.
Gain Organizational Alignment On Overall Goals
In 2020, to support power generation customers in transitioning to a more sustainable world, Siemens Energy AG was announced as a spin-off from Siemens AG with €28 billion in global revenue and 91,000 employees worldwide. At the outset, Siemens Energy faced the challenge of aligning resources to deliver on a new business strategy with significant changes in customer needs, while transforming into a new company. The new company had to understand not only these changing customer needs, but also regional requirements, competitive positioning, and evolving regulations.
Siemens Energy’s power generation service needed to align priorities across product, marketing, and sales with the overall goal of actively shaping the path to a climate-friendly future of affordable, reliable, and sustainable power generation. It also needed to unify employees as one team with aligned and measurable KPIs.
Implement The Marketing Strategy Compass Across Functions
Gutierrez, the marketing leader at the time, reviewed Forrester’s Marketing Strategy Compass and determined it would be the best approach to align the business strategy across all marketing resources. Klingemann was appointed the head of marketing strategy and began developing the details — who would be required to participate and what format would be most effective for the global team, including required milestones and reporting.
- Building a cross-functional strategy formulation team. Siemens Energy collaborated across business strategy, product, sales, and marketing. The leaders of these cross-functional teams became the core members of the group formulating the strategy for product, marketing, and sales. Many had spent most of their career at Siemens or in the energy sector, but Klingemann had the foresight to include a different viewpoint as well — he invited six young, high-potential employees who had been in the business for three to five years to join the core team. Klingemann worked closely with the other functions and regions to prioritize the need for strategy formulation across the organization to best position the new spin-off to deliver on the ambitious business goals.
- Learning the process. Klingemann and his team planned in-person workshops for each of the three levels of the Marketing Strategy Compass. The discussions in these workshops led to clarity and alignment of each decision. “The process is even more important than the outcome,” said Gutierrez. “We learned to have the right outcome. The process is asking questions we would never ask ourselves.” Working through the decisions at each level and building on each decision provided direction and structure. The first two workshops and outcomes were completed with a presentation to the division CEO.
- Being flexible and remaining relevant. Two interruptions put the work on pause: On the Siemens Energy leadership team, Gutierrez and the Siemens Energy CEO changed positions; at the same time, the COVID-19 pandemic changed the way in which the global workshops were held. The team was energized by the work it had completed and continued to meet remotely in short video sessions with clear agendas to further refine the alignment, priorities, and goals. When a new Siemens Energy CEO was named, the cross-functional team quickly presented to the new management team the work it had done to align product, marketing, and sales to the overall business strategy. The cross-functional team grew stronger in its commitment to the strategy and moved forward to complete the third level of the Marketing Strategy Compass.
Measuring The Results
Working together across regions and functions and aligning resources to the overall business goals in the strategic period was pivotal for Siemens Energy. The spin-off achieved transformative alignment in a complex matrix environment within a year of its formation. This accelerated its time to market and uncovered collaboration opportunities for additional areas such as customer meetings and transformation boot camps.
Siemens Energy saw the following benefits:
- An aligned strategy from the business objectives through the marketing, sales, and product resources. Clarity and alignment on goals and priorities across the revenue engine ensures all resources are delivering on the overall goals of the new business, even in times of change due to internal adjustments. The head of business strategy for Siemens Energy’s power generation service commented that this work now made it possible for the team to deliver on the corporate strategy. The Siemens Energy team has remained focused on understanding the changing needs of its customers and delivering against business goals.
- Annual KPIs that connect the team. The strategy for marketing, sales, and product was the input that aligned the roadmaps, goals, and measurements for success down to individual KPIs. This kept the teams working on strategic priorities and prevented them from forgoing strategic readiness work for the annual goals. This balance and alignment between strategic goals and annual goals was important for delivering on the overall business goals for the strategic period.
- Relevant strategy. The marketing strategy is still relevant after the interruption from COVID-19 and executive changes. The company is now working across regions and functions to address the changing needs of its customers. Gutierrez stated that this strategy work helped the company “think big and think longer term at all levels to allow ourselves to challenge what we have known to be the industry in the past.” The cross-functional team felt the pride of ownership when speaking to the C-suite about the strategy for marketing, product, and sales.
How Forrester Helped
Siemens Energy used the decisions informed by the Marketing Strategy Compass to challenge itself and think beyond its comfort level. The initiative transformed the company, enabling it to move through a turbulent time of unknowns to having companywide alignment, clarity, and measurements on the business goals for the annual plan and the strategic period. Klingemann tells the story of the transformation as “becoming part of the DNA to move the strategy forward,” and statements from team members include “I am part of the new company, and I can shape the future.”
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Disclaimer: The above is an excerpt of a published Forrester case study. Forrester does not endorse Siemens Energy or its offerings.