How “Big 4” Deloitte Gradually Build its Unique Leadership?

Deloitte have a unique internal environment that allows all of its employees to be indispensable parts of the firm's success.
Deloitte leadership team speaks at conference
Courtesy: Deloitte
By | 10 min read

From its humble origins in 1845, when William Welch Deloitte opened his first London office, Deloitte has grown into an international network of more than 286,000 professionals in more than 150 countries and territories today. Providing audit, tax, consulting, enterprise risk and financial advisory services, this firm serves national and international companies, from small and middle-sized enterprises, to public sector and non-profit organizations.

When being asked what makes Deloitte different from any other organization, people can, of course, point to the depth and breadth of this firm’s capability and the perspective that affords it. But the real difference lies in the people within the organization. As a people-powered business, Deloitte shared sense of purpose and a spirit of connected problem-solving is what sets this firm apart.

A Brief of the Firm’s Growing Pathway

For more than 100 years, Deloitte LLP and its predecessor organizations has always successfully meet the demand of its clients for solutions to their ever-changing needs. This firm has sustained its clients’ trust and exceeded their expectations throughout its history.

The firm was founded by William Welch Deloitte in London in 1845 and expanded into the United States in 1890. It merged with Haskins & Sells to form Deloitte Haskins & Sells in 1972 and with Touche Ross in the US to form Deloitte & Touche in 1989. In 1993, the international firm was renamed Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu, later abbreviated to Deloitte.

Between 2003 and 2005, Deloitte LLP reorganized its businesses to better align itself with the manner in which business is conducted. It currently has the following four subsidiaries that provide client services: Deloitte & Touche LLP, Deloitte Consulting LLP, Deloitte Financial Advisory Services LLP and Deloitte Tax LLP.

As The Deloitte US Firms move forward, they continue to establish themselves as the employers of choice in their professions. The Deloitte US Firms have a unique internal environment that allows the organization to deliver high quality services to today’s leading companies—and tomorrow’s.

Make Magic Happen With Diversified Employee Community

Deloitte is the largest professional services network in the world by revenue and by the number of professionals. However, it is the employees that make Deloitte exceptional. Each person in this firm is unique and valued for being among the best and brightest in the business. Because this firm connect for impact that matters.

Deloitte staff in a tech conference
Courtesy: Deloitte

Deloitte incorporates more than 300,000 global professionals, together with a multitude of alliance partners, in a variety of disciplines in 150 countries. As a result, its people are supported and welcomed for their diverse skills, perspectives, and backgrounds—and they are empowered to grow and lead at all levels throughout their career.

“Because we know that the fusion of diverse perspectives powers us to collectively make a sustainable difference for our people, clients, and society.” – said by Deloitte representee.

Seeing the bigger picture enables us to make sense of today’s complex and accelerating world of global change and provides the creative catalyst to find breakthrough solutions to the challenges that lie ahead. And Deloitte is doing that by collecting its employee’s diverse idea. There is a strong believe in the strengths that can be derived from diversity in this firm.

“Together, we form part of something much bigger, much stronger. We celebrate differing opinions, ideas, cultures and backgrounds. We embrace diversity in all forms and value uniqueness.” said Deloitte.

At Deloitte, they care about making an impact that truly matters: for its people, clients and society. Together, it fosters a culture in which its people feel empowered to drive positive change every day.

“Our diversity allows us to grow.” – Peter Loukopoulos, Tax & Legal Chief of Staff and Operations Manager.

For the employees here, they have various reasons to proud of this culture.

“I get excited by people who are equally excited about new ways to solve problems. I am surrounded by bright minds and passionate hearts. I don’t think I have ever heard someone say “I don’t know.” And then just leave it at that. There is always someone you can consult with on a difficult problem. I am very proud of the work we do to ensure a sustainable future for our planet and helping people to learn and grow. We strive to make it possible for everybody to align with their purpose and together we are on a mission to constantly evolve and adapt as we aim to create more value for our clients, both external and internal.” – said Liza Engel – Chief People Officer, People and Purpose.

“What I love most about Deloitte is the ease with which I can be myself. Growing up in a diverse environment has helped me understand the importance of diversity and no doubt also contributed to the importance of being open and honest with myself with respect to sexual preferences. We have an amazing number of role models: openly gay people, working mothers, and so on, who all are examples of how diversity and inclusion are lived in the firm. I also love that we can actively engage in topics that are important to us through networks, where people can come together and have a sense of community. I don’t think about inclusiveness and diversity every day – because we truly live it.” – said Peter Loukopoulos, Chief of Staff and Operations Manager, Tax & Legal

4 Lessons From Deloitte to Be Different

Deloitte staff work on project
Courtesy: Deloitte

For Moffatt, Jim Moffatt President, Deloitte success is all about impact over time. He said, “The world is changing so fast that you need to take a longer view.” This is why Moffatt invests as much time as he does making sure people understand the strategy and can implement it, leading to “aspiration, inspiration and perspiration.” Here are 4 lessons that we can learn from this firm’s strategy.

Lesson #1: Create Culture Aiming Shared Values

Deloitte defines its purpose is to make an impact that matters. All people here are driven by their desire to create positive outcomes for their clients, communities and people. Everything they do is with intent—the intent to make a meaningful difference.

A vibrant, stimulating and collaborative workplace culture is key to achieving this. The commitment to diversity and inclusion in a business ensures people take care of each other and feel valued, and is underpinned by their belief in the importance of wellbeing.

A big part of what makes Deloitte different is its culture, which Moffatt describes as “low ego, collaborative.” While Deloitte consultants must be independent and objective, they also “learn how to interact with a variety of styles and experience levels… and sometimes have to tell clients things they don’t want to hear.”

Lesson #2: Accept Pioneering Challenge With Digital Solutions

Despite its early forms proving increasingly popular among businesses looking to digitize their operations and cut costs, Artificial Intelligence is still in its infancy, and while the majority of organizations are exploring the benefits of the technology, those that are actually implementing it commonly struggle with its successful execution. The establishment of an AI organization can be seen as an organizational change, and as with more or less all changes, it is important that the change is supported by the leadership and that a clear vision is formulated.

The leadership of an organization must back the establishment of an AI organization and be prepared to fund it and give it sufficient time. For instance, to manage the AI community and to experiment with this new technology, it is important that the leadership understands the usefulness and necessity of this investment. Leaders should always be aware of what business needs AI can fulfil, and how the technology will influence the organization as a whole. Deloitte is on front running position in the global AI market.

Lesson #3: Nurture Business Platform With the Best Learning and Development Opportunities

Learning changes the world. There is no standing still. Employees should be encouraged to challenge themself and empowered to mentor others, to forge new paths and to make an impact that matters across the globe. By this way, they could develop world-class leaders and professionals who are inclusive and approachable. In other worlds, employees should choose the impact they want to make.

What’s certain is employees will be able to lead at every level, from interns to top management. Employees are the business’s future, so the firm should be committed to investing in their development to help you become the best you can be. That way, they can be an inspiration to those around them.

Deloitte gives employee the opportunity to learn and develop through working with the best and exploring the paths that are best for them. This firm provides a globally connected network that offers cross-geography mobility opportunities and approachable leadership to foster their growth and development. Along the way, they will develop skills and experience that will last their whole career, wherever it takes this.

Deloitte staff collaborate in a training session
Courtesy: Deloitte

For example, even for technology-driven organizational changes, it is just as important to focus on the engagement of human labor. Getting employees to accept and participate in AI implementation is key for successful adoption, and to do this, it is important that executives are aware of AI and also understand how it will affect their organization. With AI, this is difficult, because, as its potential is still to be realized, it is intangible. One way around this, as seen within Deloitte, is for leaders to develop an awareness campaign to help employees become aware of AI. Deloitte did this through the firm’s AI ‘AIME’ co-worker. The self-learning machine known as AIME gently introduced the firm’s employees to the idea of AI by interacting with them in the workplace. This aroused their curiosity, and encouraged staff to voluntarily sign up for ‘AI for dummies sessions’ to learn more about the subject.

Lesson #4: Investing to Capitalize on Its Own Strengths

Teams with tactical capacity – the ability to work under changing conditions and translate strategies into actions –  beat individuals every time. Get a partner or ally so you can be better together and avoid the consultant roller coaster.

Deloitte is continually investing to capitalize on its own strengths with Deloitte University playing a big part. At the bottom of the recession, the company decided to build its own training center, and while this was a significant investment during a recession, Deloitte’s leaders were committed to pushing it forward as a way to build leadership. Today, according to Moffatt, it has “transformed the way we think about leadership and our culture.”

Beyond that, Deloitte puts a strong emphasis on on-the-job training. Moffatt, who believes “the way you succeed is by helping others be successful,” drives this message as a core component of Deloitte’s culture, interviewing for cultural fit and then reinforcing it at every step of the way of every employee’s journey through Deloitte.

The Bottom Lines

The consulting field is growing faster than ever, driven by the information revolution, baby boomers moving out of corporate roles, and the struggling economy. By remaining its strong root built from great leadership, Deloitte have stepped itself into a greater world and gave other business valuable lessons.

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