When Professionals Have to Lead: A New Model for High Performance

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Harvard Business Press, Nov 12, 2007 - Business & Economics - 256 pages
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For too long, professional services firms have relied on the “producer-manager” model, which works well in uncomplicated business environments. However, today’s managing directors must balance often conflicting roles, more demanding clients, tougher competitors, and associates with higher expectations of partners at all levels.

When Professionals Have to Lead presents an overarching framework better suited to such complexity. It identifies the four critical activities for effective PSF leadership: setting strategic direction, securing commitment to this direction, facilitating execution, and setting a personal example. Through examples from consulting practices, accounting firms, investment banks, and other professional service organizations, industry veterans DeLong, Gabarro, and Lees show how this model works to:
• Align your firm’s culture and key organizational components.
• Satisfy your clients’ needs without sacrificing essential managerial responsibilities.
• Address matters of size, scale, and complexity while maintaining the qualities that make professional services firms unique.

A valuable new resource, this book redefines the role of leadership in professional services firms.

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Strongly recommend this book to anyone contemplating running their own Professional Services Firm, (PSF) or even joining one. Cannot impress enough upon the potential reader how valuable this book has been to me professionally and personally. Only the High Achiever in you should be reading this book, slackers who aren't serious about the mission of a PSF and executing to achieve the goals of the firm. 


From Virtual Clients Management to Highly Demanding
ProductIntensive Professional Services
The Strategic Imperative
The HighNeedforAchievement Personality
The Essential B Player
The Challenge of Connection

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About the author (2007)

Thomas J. DeLong is the Philip J. Stomberg Professor of Management Practice in the Organizational Behavior area at the Harvard Business School. John J. Gabarro is Baker Foundation Professor at the Harvard Business School. Robert J. Lees is former director of professional development at Morgan Stanley and former director of human resources for Ernst & Young International.

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