We tailor proven delivery mechanisms to local contexts to ensure plans turn into results.
Too often, delivery is an afterthought. We are convinced that most transformations fail due to ideas that look good on paper but were never thoroughly tested with stakeholders on the ground. This leads to a dynamic of infeasible delivery timelines, poor sequencing of initiatives, and not having the right change agents to drive initiatives. In addition, delivery is often underresourced—staff who do not have the right capabilities, initiatives that do not have teams driving, and too little investment in monitoring.
What we do
At the McKinsey Center for Agricultural Transformation, we believe that delivery is an integral part of building a viable strategy. Over time, we have realized that it’s critical to engage all stakeholders, especially those closest to the ground reality, from day one. This allows us to identify the best change agents for each transformation initiative and to anticipate and plan for implementation challenges before they lead to delays and failure. We also focus on setting up a robust delivery structure (such as a project management office, or PMO) that has strong executive leadership, clear accountabilities organized around initiatives, and a set of milestones that trigger corrective action when not achieved.
For example, our experience suggests that tailoring project-management mechanisms to in-country contexts is particularly important. When the right delivery structures are put in place, they can concentrate talent, monitor implementation, and make problem solving more efficient. Most large-scale transformations in the private sector use versions of PMOs. We also have good examples of PMOs working to accelerate agricultural transformation (including in Ethiopia, Malaysia, and Morocco), and we can partner to apply these principles from public and private sectors to create practical delivery mechanisms.
Read our paper about planning and delivery to discover how to increase the odds of a successful rural transformation.