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All Things To All People: Why Shared Services And Outsourcing Stakeholder Management Fails

Ask any leader trying to transform his organization through shared services and outsourcing who his stakeholders are, and he’ll come up with the standard list—the business units, executive management and perhaps even his company’s external customers. For good measure, he might throw in the retained team and suppliers. But are all stakeholders in a shared […]

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What’s the future for finance shared services and outsourcing talent?

When I’m not obsessing about the lack of investment in change management when companies outsource, I worry about talent. Luckily, ACCA (, the global accountancy body, is worried about talent of the finance variety, especially in light of the adoption of shared services and outsourcing models….and gives me the opportunity to put some of my […]

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Luck o’ the Irish Outsourcing Leaders

Not too long ago I met an Irishman named Coleman O’Flynn at an outsourcing transformation conference. And as he was charming the dickens out me with his soft brogue, it hit me like a ton of bricks—look around at some of the leading business services transformation initiatives, and you’ll find more than your fair share of Irish […]

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Making an outsourcing relationship better: that’s above my pay grade

  There seems to be a trend going on amongst outsourcing client types. It’s called the kick-the-can upward approach to fixing a flailing relationship. The game goes like this: client relationship manager and account manager agree that there are problems with the relationship. The client gripes, while his or her provider account executive expresses all […]

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Outsourcing Relationships: Not Puppy Love

I’ve been obsessed about what constitutes a good outsourcing relationship for some time. Whenever I have the ear of a player in our outsourcing community, I leap at the opportunity to pick up another brilliant observation about what works…and what doesn’t when two parties come together to provide business services. Yesterday morning I was speaking […]

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Legal: The Hardest Profession to Make Outsourcing Change?

The last bastion against outsourcing? Recently I sat down with Ed Brooks of the LPO Program to discuss the challenges of change management in the legal profession. Whether the perpetrator of the change is the GC, or law firm management, changing a profession that is mired in tradition, has historically been isolated from other corporate change, […]

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It’s the water cooler chatter that sinks outsourcing and shared services change.

You know the situation well; the sponsors are all bought into outsourcing and shared services, but the stakeholders-at-large have mounted own guerilla war, trying to sink the program. Finding, and managing, the ringleaders is often like herding cats. You know who I am talking about: those self-appointed keepers of the corporate flame who position themselves […]

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Sourcing Change Management Lessons from the Fiscal Cliff

Government is the gift that just keeps on giving…when they’re not taking through regulation and taxation.  Check out my newest post at

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Behave and Believe—The Ultimate Goal of Shared Services and Outsourcing Change Management

  Last week I was wading through a pile of change management methodologies—you know, the standard ones that are actually quite good—the Kotter and the PROSCI frameworks and strategies, tools and techniques.  It struck me that the change management challenge for outsourcing and shared services is not the dearth of methodologies—there are plenty of templates […]

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To brand or not to brand (shared services and outsourcing). That is the question…

  Now, I fundamentally believe that branding any corporate business model change that happens through shared services and outsourcing is a good thing. After all, people buy brand. Brand is shorthand for what we get, and what we expect to feel like after we buy a product or a service. It’s a promise.  And when […]

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