What Is This Service?
Our Leadership Development service empowers mid-sized service firms to intentionally identify, coach and mentor leadership talent. This service provides a framework and formal program for unleashing human potential to achieve the outcomes that matter most in business. If your service firm does not have a formal Leadership Development program, you are most certainly missing opportunities to grow.
For the past 20 years, The Shattuck Group has served more than 70 mid-sized professional service firms, those with 25-100 staff and 10-50 million in revenue. We’ve seen what happens when organizations of this size actively nurture leadership talent with formal programs. This has led us to believe in one simple principle. Leaders are made, not born.
Unfortunately, most mid-sized service firms do not adopt the sorts of programs that allow people with leadership potential to become effective leaders. They also put people in leadership roles who, quite frankly, shouldn’t be there. The result, far too often, is that founders, owners and those who bear ultimate responsibility for outcomes—whom we call stakeholders—are frustrated. What sorts of things frustrate them? We typically hear these kinds of questions.

  • Why aren’t we getting more done? Usually, stakeholders ask this question because they feel like the right things are not getting done fast enough or not at all. It’s often quite clear to the stakeholders what should get done and how to do it. But when they talk to their leaders, they get head nods but few results.
  • How do we get leaders to “own” strategy, decision-making and financial outcomes? We often hear stakeholders say things like – “I just wish they’d pick up the ball and run with it.” Usually this means they want people they trust to take specific action. Stakeholders want their leaders to define a strategy and plan, to execute the plan including making key decisions and to bear responsibility for results, financial and otherwise.
  • Why don’t things ever seem to go according to plan? Stakeholders can usually build and execute plans that achieve their intended results. But when others in the firm try to do so, the plans never seem to produce the same types of high-impact outcomes.
  • How do we get leaders to act autonomously but in line with what we’re trying to achieve? Stakeholders usually want leaders to act autonomously, but also in accordance with the larger goals the organization is seeking to achieve. This is a fine balancing act. How much autonomy should stakeholders give leaders? What metrics should be put in place to gauge outcomes? How should stakeholders handle situations where leaders have acted autonomously but the results have not been what they hoped for?
  • How do we turn subject matter experts into actual leaders? Nearly every professional service firm we’ve worked with struggles with this issue. People with advanced degrees, years of experience or even just tenure within an organization end up in leadership roles. These people are undeniable subject matter experts in the industry, but are they leaders? Should they be leading teams and influencing people? Do their technical qualifications automatically translate into leadership qualities?
  • How can we help young people with potential to develop their impact as leaders? Stakeholders at mid-size service firms know that tomorrow’s leaders might very well be within the organization already. But who are they? How can they be identified? How can they be retained? How can they be invested in to ensure that they achieve their full potential?
  • What does it mean to be a leader for our firm? In nearly 100% of the mid-size service firms we’ve served, stakeholders have not formally defined what leadership means to them. They can usually tell us what the outcomes look like, once a leader has performed. But they can rarely state what attributes from the leader actually produced those outcomes.
  • How do we get people who currently wield influence to step into leadership roles? Most stakeholders can identify a handful of people within their firm whom they believe could be effective leaders. But how do they persuade these people to step up into leadership roles, especially when there is no formal leadership program to help them along the way?



This service addresses all of these issues by:

  • Empowering stakeholders to formally define what leadership means to the organization. This creates clarity and a clear set of criteria for anyone who wants to be a leader. Think of this like a leadership yard stick that allows you to measure every leader with a formal and documented standard.
  • Focusing leaders on producing outcomes that matter. This increases the overall level of responsibility that leaders take for owning outcomes, not just processes and plans.
  • Creating clarity about what the organization is trying to accomplish and how leaders can take autonomous action in line with strategic goals. This frees leaders to use their skills, judgment and instincts to make a real impact on the business.
  • Raising up the next generation of leaders who will be making an impact long after the stakeholders may be retired. This ensures the stability of your firm for the long road.
  • Enticing people who have leadership potential to actually step into leadership roles with confidence. This creates a clear roadmap that people can feel supported in as they accept greater levels of responsibility.

Who Needs This Service?
Professional service firms that:

  • Desire to get even better performance from their current leaders.
  • Want to formally define what leadership means for their firm.
  • Need to raise up a new generation of leaders.
  • Want to get more done with their current staff.

To learn more about how we do this, please click on Our Approach above.