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Pay attention to organisational structure - and even more to processes

 
Many companies discuss at length what kind of organisational structure they should employ in emerging markets. They focus on location of offices, reporting lines and where certain business functions should be located.
 
But what many companies (even those who understand the importance of having an excellent local presence) ignore are the organisational processes. Local managers should be made accountable for results but given considerable freedom of action. Goizueta had the following message for Coca-Cola's regional and local managers:
 
I want you to tell me what you need to do to expand your business, what kind of capital you need to do so, and what kind of net return you're going to get.
 
Another good example is GlaxoWellcome (now GlaxoSmithKline), which allowed its local managers to decide what was the best way to spend investment money, as long as they met agreed returns on investment and stuck to broad corporate guidelines. Once headquarters started to get more involved, the performance suffered.
 
 

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