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POP-UP BOARDS

Better outcomes can be reached through better scrutiny. To succeed, sometimes you need an external sounding board and a safe space to stress-test your strategy.


Our extensive Board experience and reach allows us to bring together an experienced panel of trusted peers and experts who will impartially challenge, critique, support and validate your strategy empowering you to make more informed decisions.

In each of the Pop-up Board case studies below, Criticaleye was able to bring together a carefully selected group of experts to share stories and experiences of the issues the host company was facing.

Company Type
Key drivers for Pop-up Board
Outcomes of Pop-up Board

Global provider of HR services (based in UK and APAC, recently acquired by outsourcing services provider)

  • The desire to establish a presence in Singapore, either independently or with two other companies from its within its Group
  • To better understand the appetite for its service offerings in this new region
  • To better understand their target buyer in this new region
  • To debate the pros and cons of launching three business as one under the Group brand
  • A better understanding of the region including rising operational costs, talent acquisition and the business landscape
  • The idea of utilising pilot schemes in the new region to generate interest
  • Advice on diversifying when it comes to the target buyer, selling into CFO for example
  • An overview of business opportunities and sectors in Singapore and how they might be approached
  • A better understanding of culture, and how a local individual or organisation should play a key role in establishing the new brand

Global oil and gas engineering and management services company (approx. 1,400 staff, 15 offices worldwide)

  • New management team
  • New strategy to expand internationally
  • Need to form partnerships to win contracts – JVs, strategic alliances, informal consortiums with larger, global companies
  • Difficulties of increased competition in the sector
  • Best practices for regional teams and how they can be leveraged to win new business
  • Much clearer vision on how to make their partnership strategy a success
  • Specific input on live contracts including one in Latin America and an early stage partnership in the Middle East
  • Recommendations around the start-up, management and exit strategies for JVs
  • The skills required from the executive team leading the partnerships
  • How to embed a JV into the organisational culture
  • A new set of relationships with the panel which the company could call upon for additional advice and support

Leading manager and developer of student accommodation (approx. 1,000 employees, partnerships with over 55 higher education providers)

  • Developing a new digital strategy (its key customers are all digital natives)
  • Need for input on key challenges, potential pitfalls and opportunities
  • Questions around whether there is a value in having a digital advisory board

  • Tested and gained feedback on digital strategy
  • The implementation of a 90-day limit to project duration focusing on achieving a smaller number of deliverables faster
  • More proactive approach to social media
  • Change of internal culture to promote data/content sharing
  • Using reverse mentoring so digital natives can mentor more senior staff


Technology retailer (appliances)

  • Need to increase customer engagement to drive higher repurchase activity/retain customers
  • Gain a better understanding of where marketing budget can be deployed most effectively to achieve this

  • Reassessment of marketing spend
  • Better understanding of how and why they interact with customers
  • Insight on how to use field based staff as brand ambassadors

Brand and design consultancy (based in UK and North America, works with business across multiple sectors and locations)

Need to test and get feedback on a new service proposition before its goes to market

  • Constructive and valuable feedback on the new service proposition
  • The potential challenges/questions the consultancy might get from prospective clients
  • The opportunity to follow up with members of the panel for further feedback

Property company (£100m turnover, approx. 1,300 employees in over 100 locations)

  • Need for advice on driving growth/performance in European markets, specifically Germany
  • Overcoming challenge of managing team in Germany in terms of culture, communication and incentives
  • Need to improve systems and structures around talent management, reward, communication of central and local strategy and better understanding of local markets and teams

  • Input from panel members who were German nationals, worked in Germany or worked for a German business
  • Clearer plan of how to bring European teams together more regularly to share success and unify the Group

Food and drink (leading European frozen food business. Produce and market premium brand frozen food in 11 countries and distribute across Central and Eastern Europe)

  • Need to develop a more effective supply chain strategy
  • Need to build and maintain relationships within the supply chain to enable innovation and cost control
  • Need for deeper insight into areas including growth and cost management, innovation vs. capacity management, single vs. double tier supply chain, managing production capability and communicating supply chain strategy

  • Greater understanding of how to put customers at the centre of the business
  • Plan to drive new product development in a bid to stay in the retailer spotlight
  • Plan to create uniform performance targets

Asian division of international publishing group (employs over 300 people in the region)

  • To benchmark the organisation’s digital transition against other businesses/industries in the region
  • To understand the challenges and implications of operating in China

  • Plan to move away from the idea of having a digital team, to a situation where a digital mindset runs throughout the organisation
  • A better understanding of the Chinese market and how imperative it is to commercial success
  • Need to balance any focus on the Chinese market with other responsibilities
  • Looking at changes to the existing brand so it will fit with the Chinese market

Higher education and research institution

  • The need to explore new models for higher education in light of changes to HE funding, greater competition and the need to address the STEM skills gap
  • The need to communicate a new strategy which is effective and engages all stakeholders

  • The opportunity to prioritise and adjust elements of the new strategy based on the comments from the Pop-up Board
  • A realisation of the need for external input in order to drive significant change across the organisation (this Pop-up Board resulted in numerous connections/potential partnerships with other education providers)
  • Points made at this Pop-up Board will be utilised in the Member’s internal strategy presentations in the coming months

Leading global manufacturer based in China (60% global market share and over 750 employees worldwide)

  • The desire to expand into new markets and expand global market share
  • The need to maximise buyer interest in view of an impending exit from private equity backers
  • How to remain competitive and implement an effective pricing strategy in the Chinese market



  • A shift in focus to the long term success and sustainability of the business so it can maintain its market leading position
  • Ideas for possible exit routes as well as how to reinforce the company’s brand and positioning to make it most appealing to buyers
  • A peer to peer brainstorm on disruptors and how the company can put innovation at the heart of strategy
  • The need to tell a story which will reinforce the company’s USPs and enable it to remain competitive in the Chinese market