JF Brennan: Leading Through the Next Century with Confidence

How OnStrategy helped a senior leader of a 100-year-old construction, environmental services, and harbor management company build greater confidence in leading the organization into the next 100 years.


“We’ve been doing planning for 20 years and we’re finally driving a level of coordination, communication, and collaboration across all nine of our divisions. Division leaders and staff are getting really comfortable with how the software works and what’s required of them on a monthly basis to update the actual performance of their goals.”

– Mark Binsfeld, Vice President, Marketing & Business Development, JF Brennan

The Challenge:

The 100-year-old company recognized that the factors that led to their past success would not necessarily lead them to future success. JF Brennan needed to set the course for the future and move toward it with confidence.

The Outcome:

A strong foundation of leadership to take the company into their next 100 years. Leadership outlined a vision for the future and used the strategic planning and performance management processes to ensure collaboration and execution across the company’s disparate divisions.

The Vision:

To demonstrate a stewardship of the waterways by providing the highest quality work throughout a wide range of marine services.

The Approach:

For a company to stand the test of time, it must be willing to adapt to ever-changing needs of its customers and regularly pursue new opportunities. In the marine services industry, companies like JF Brennan are facing evolving regulatory concerns, an increase of data collection and analysis as well as shifts in environmental policy that affect their day-to-day business.

Recognizing that what was needed to drive future success differed from the factors that drove success in the past, JF Brennan’s leadership needed to create and execute a strategic plan.

Despite previous efforts at strategic planning, the JF Brennan leadership team was not operating as cohesively and efficiently as they desired. Driving future success would require alignment across the team, with ongoing communication between team members and clear communication from the leadership team regarding the company’s strategic priorities and progress.

To make this happen, JF Brennan worked with OnStrategy to refine and execute its strategic plan. OnStrategy developed a custom, tailored approach to help JF Brennan’s leadership communicate and collaborate more effectively. This approach included:

  • Plan Architecture: OnStrategy’s outsourced Chief Strategy Officer worked with senior leadership to refine the architecture, ownership and accountability of a strategic plan recently completed by JF Brennan.
  • Plan Refinement: OnStrategy worked with JF Brennan to bring more actionability and clarity to the company’s strategic plan for improved engagement and execution.
  • OnStrategy Application: JF Brennan leadership uses the OnStrategy application for performance management and reporting.
  • 1:1 Leader Support: OnStrategy provides ongoing dedicated support to JF Brennan leadership to ensure they effectively adapt and evolve to changing organizational needs.

The Deliverables

In addition to working with leadership to build a disciplined approach to sharing progress, OnStrategy provided a suite of deliverables to support JF Brennan’s ongoing strategic planning work:

  • 3-Year Plan Roadmap: A clear 3-year planning roadmap with short- and mid-term markers to measure performance reflecting their targeted growth trajectory.
  • Annual Corporate Plan with Measures & Performance Targets: An annual corporate plan with performance targets and key performance indicators required to support the successful achievement of their goals.
  • One-page Plan: A stylized version of the annual strategic plan that places all key information in an easily shared, easily refenced one-page format.

The Results

Working with OnStrategy, JF Brennan built and executed a strategic plan to drive continued success for the long-thriving company. Through the strategic planning and performance management processes, OnStrategy helped JF Brennan’s leadership team more effectively communicate and collaborate across the teams. As a result, the company has seen revenue growth in key sectors, an increase in their operational efficiency and improvement in their safety programs.

  • Vision for the Future: A clearly defined vision of the future with specific, actionable supporting initiatives gives the JF Brennan leadership team a path forward.
  • Confidence: OnStrategy helped strengthen senior leadership’s confidence with where the organization is going, how they’re going to get there, and how progress gets reported.
  • Clear Reporting: Structured, standard reporting allows everyone to know what metrics they own and what they’re responsible for achieving.

Convinced? Let’s build something together.


Join 60,000 other leaders engaged in transforming their organizations.

Subscribe to get the latest agile strategy best practices, free guides, case studies, and videos in your inbox every week.

Keystone bright-path authority-partners iowa caa maw maryland mc kissimmee dot washoe gulf reno