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Strategic management of a national subsidiary of a multinational company

Netmapping® Case

«National subsidiaries are influenced and sometimes even limited by intragroup policies, strategies and culture. Using the method "Netmapping®", the group guidelines are framed and refined for the national circumstances. Furthermore, the management team extends existing requirements with their own objectives and actions to reach enduring success.»
Dr. Jürg Honegger, Netmapping® Moderator 


A multinational company decides to incorporate a national subsidiary in Switzerland. The new team is built of a heterogeneous group of specialists. To reach a common understanding of the relevant interrelations and to break the concern-guidelines down into the national conditions, the CEO decided to apply the method "Netmapping®".

Key aspects of the mandate

  • Development of a business model (Netmap) for the national subsidiary

  • Determination of the room to manoevre for the local management and deduction of ways to take advantage of them

  • Coordination of objectives and actions between the multinational headquarter, the national subsidiary and its departments

  • Periodic review of the success of implementation

The Netmapping® process

Netmapping on the timeline

 The Netmapping® process consists of several 2-day workshops (cf. chart above):

Netmap as an enhanced strategy map
  1. The team collectively develops the Netmap as a enhanced strategy map (cf. chart above). First, the level of abstraction was determined: The subsidiary in Switzerland wanted to develop the Netmap for the national level (not for the European company (overlying level) and neither for a particular department (underlying level)).  

Due to this classification, only the relevant cause-and-effect relations are included in the Netmap. Concern guidelines are included as external influences. 

  1. For every external influence scenarios are created and evaluated in the second workshop. As a general rule, 3 scenarios are developed for a certain time frame (5 years, for instance): an optimistic, a pessimistic as well as a probable setting. On the basis of the Netmap, the team also discusses the general influence of these scenarios on the subsidiary's targets and action plans.
  2. The third workshop is devoted to define concrete targets. On the basis of the probable scenario the team defines its targets and evaluates the actual position within the target-performance analysis.  In a target cascade the group's goals are broken down. Finally the Netmap will be expanded into a Management-Cockpit illustrating the rate of target reach with signal colours (traffic light system, cf. chart below).
  3. When reading the Netmap, most targets are influenced by several levers. Therefore the fourth workshop concentrates on discussing actions. For each lever the team commonly derives those operations, which are most effective to reach the targets. Such actions can consist of activities (= tasks with clear responsibilities and deadlines), behaviour guidelines (= regulations with immediate effect and clear responsibility, but without an expiration date) or projects.
  4. In order to adapt constantly to the changing external influences periodic review workshops are executed. Thereby the Netmap is being re-evaluated and enhanced. Also the scenarios, targets and actions are challenged and if necessary adjusted to the current situation. These review workshops help the team to implement an effective strategic management on a national level and permanently work on the common understanding of long-term success.
Netmap as an enhanced management cockpit

«The idea of finding a common direction with my team within two days seemed to be impossible initially. In the process of generating our Netmap, we discussed all important aspects of our business, particularly the ones we didn't agree on. On the one hand this experience welds together the team. On the other hand it obviates inefficient debates on principles during daily business.»
CEO of a national subsidiary


  • The team developed a common vision of long-term success and agreed on activities to achieve it
  • The guidelines of the concern are broken down into specific targets for the national subsidiary. These are completed with further goals of the local management team.
  • Due to the Netmap, the team will be able to determine the effects of changing concern guidelines on the local subsidiary at all times

Your benefit with Netmapping®

  • A (possibly newly structured) team will immediately be capable of acting, because the Netmap, the targets and the activities are established conjointly
  • In dependence on decisions of a superior authority, the Netmap illustrates options and scope for future actions
 Disclaimer | Imprint |  25.07.2016 


Juerg Honegger

Juerg Honegger

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