BT reportedly drafts in McKinsey partner as head of new ‘strategy and change unit’

According to an FT report, BT has installed a senior partner from consultancy firm McKinsey to help shape the firm’s future strategy, until they find a permanent head for the new department.

Andrew Wooden

April 22, 2024

2 Min Read

Tom Meakin will lead the new ‘strategy and change unit’ with the job title of Chief Strategy and Change Officer on an interim basis, says the FT which has had sight of an internal memo.

Chief executive Allison Kirkby said the division would “drive the refresh of BT Group’s corporate strategy” and would “also define the next phase of our transformation” with a focus on business-wide change programmes, says the FT. The division will also apparently bring together BT’s corporate strategy and development team and the group transformation and assurance team.

The report also quotes the memo from Kirkby as saying: “Over the next few weeks, Tom will be working closely with myself and the ExCo to design the broader unit and make sure the accountabilities for both strategy and major change are in the right place, so we’re set up well to deliver across the company.”

A person familiar with the matter at BT also apparently said Meakin is on secondment from his role as the global co-leader of McKinsey’s consumer technology and media practice, and that the two companies had a ‘long-standing relationship and that the consultancy had worked in various parts of the telecoms group in project capacities.’

It was announced in July last year that Kirkby, then CEO of Swedish telco Telia, would take over as BT’s chief executive following Philip Jansen’s departure. She took the reins in February this year, having already been on the BT board for four years.

Going by its name and the quotes provided by the FT report above, it sounds like the new ‘strategy and change unit’ will be a key pillar in manifesting Kirkby’s future plans for the incumbent – what those end up being specifically we shall have to wait and see.    

About the Author(s)

Andrew Wooden

Andrew joins on the back of an extensive career in tech journalism and content strategy.

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