Multinational Energy Company

Competitive Challenges

This global energy company ranked fourth among competitors, with ambitious goals to achieve a first-place ranking. Executives aimed to operate at unprecedented levels of productivity and emerge stronger than ever after the Gulf Coast oil spill.


To deliver industry-leading performance, the executive team sought to create a breakthrough enterprise that could seize new growth opportunities and deliver best-in-class shareholder returns. The CEO’s vision was to operate as a diversified exploration and production company at a much larger scale. It was crucial for leaders at all levels of the organization to operate in new ways to achieve the CEO’s vision

Barriers To Deliver Strategy

Leaders did not fully support the CEO’s vision for the company and did not believe the aggressive productivity targets were achievable. Despite discovering several of the world’s largest deepwater natural gas assets, the company required a completely new set of capabilities to partner with other companies as the lead operator. The BP oil spill triggered a deepwater moratorium in the Gulf of Mexico that affected every company in the industry. This company had to make tough decisions about whether to continue exploration and drilling in the Gulf.


To complement Gap International consulting partnerships with leadership teams, executives selected the Executive Challenge Course—a proven framework and methodology to deliver results significantly beyond plan. This program is designed for one purpose:; to have executives achieve significant goals in their businesses. During this 10-month program, leaders take on the challenges and deliver the outcomes most critical to their businesses. Over several years, 127 senior and high-potential leaders from the company participated in the program. Each leader designed and led a breakthrough initiative, delivering outcomes during and after the program. They received consulting and peer support as they conquered challenges and opportunities within their areas of accountability and across the business. Organizational impact was multiplied when executives participated together as teams.

The Results

Leaders’ participation in the Executive Challenge Course was a key driver in the company’s rise to a first-place ranking in its peer group. A subset of participants estimated more than $968 million in financial impact from projects executed during the program (a $3 million total investment for all participants).