Blue Beyond Consulting

Case Study

Communications Team Delivers Increased Business Value Following Strategic Planning Workshop


The global corporate communications function of a Fortune 500 biotech company with more than 55,000 employees

What We Did

Designed and facilitated strategic planning session for global corporate communications team to align on key communications capabilities to prioritize in support of the business


Team aligned on five communications capabilities to prioritize; cross-functional communications teams scoped projects, developed action plans, and are quickly becoming recognized as strategic partners to the business

Custom Workshop Helps Global Communications Function Align on Priorities to Support the Business


The Corporate Communications team at a leading global biotechnology company was feeling like the proverbial hamster on a spinning wheel—running fast just to keep up with all the incoming requests, but without a clear sense of direction that would make a real difference for the business. The organization’s leader knew it was time to get off the wheel and take a hard look at what capabilities would help move the business forward and help the team prioritize their efforts. She turned to Blue Beyond to assist her and her team in prioritizing and aligning their organizational capabilities around the work that matters most to the business and position them as strategic business partners.


Blue Beyond designed and facilitated an interactive, collaborative half-day strategic planning workshop for the Global Corporate Communications function.

  • Led an exercise that helped the team get grounded on what matters most to their business, including gaining clarity on the company’s strategic business priorities.
  • Guided the team to identify the most significant opportunities for their function to contribute to what matters most to the business – where they believe communications can have the greatest impact and become recognized as a strategic partner.
  • Facilitated an activity using the Blue Beyond World-Class Communications Capabilities Cards™ in which the team identified the capabilities required to deliver on these opportunities, and began scoping actions to enable the team to build and prioritize these capabilities in alignment with the business.

Through the ensuing dialogue, the team aligned with confidence around five key capabilities to differentiate their value in helping the business achieve its overarching goals. The workshop concluded with a robust discussion around how the team can strengthen those capabilities (and de-prioritize the distractors).

Communication Capabilities Cards

Members of the Corporate Communications team divide into groups to identify what communications capabilities will best support the business strategy as part of a strategic planning workshop.

Blue Beyond World-Class Communications Capabilities Cards are sorted into four designated categories: Distractors, Table Stakes, Value Drivers, and Differentiators.

Team members gather to review card sorting exercise and discuss what communications capabilities they will build and prioritize to support the business.


Using insights gathered during the workshop, Blue Beyond helped the client scope out and launch cross-functional projects aligned to the five prioritized capabilities. The teams are working together to put the projects into action and are quickly becoming recognized as strategic business partners. Because the workshop’s collaborative approach allowed for all global perspectives to be heard and valued, the resulting strategy was something everyone could readily support.

Next, Blue Beyond plans to help the client articulate their value to executive leadership by deliberately linking the team’s strategic plan to company objectives, further positioning Corporate Communications as a valued partner to the business. An employee engagement bonus: the team feels more engaged with their increased understanding of how they contribute to the company’s success.

“This was an energizing and insightful exercise for our global communications team. The workshop was extremely well-received — everyone appreciated the combination of learning, benchmarking, and strategic prioritization. As a result of our work with Blue Beyond, we are more aligned on our priorities and more informed about the capabilities that truly characterize the world-class communications function that we aspire to be.” – VP, Corporate Communications, Global Organization

Build Out Your Strategic Communication Capabilities

Given the unique opportunities for your communications function to contribute to your business’ specific goals, which capabilities will be most critical for your function to develop? The Blue Beyond World-Class Communications Capabilities Cards™ will help you and your team align on a strategic path forward. The cards define 46 distinct capabilities of industry-leading communications organizations. Engage your team to sort the capabilities cards into four categories:


Capabilities that deliver minimal benefit and take focus away from the most significant opportunities.

Table Stakes

Capabilities that are necessary and provide foundational support but have limited value in advancing the company’s strategy.

Value Drivers

Capabilities that will effectively position you to help the organization achieve its business goals.


Capabilities that could be game changers in helping you contribute to the achievement of business goals.

Need support with strategic planning for the corporate communications function?

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