Deloitte & Touche just took honors as the #1 place for college grads to go to work. And D&T has long won my honors for its successful, Herculean efforts to retain top women performers who had been leaving in droves—see Deloitte's WIAR/Women's Initiative Annual Report (PDF).
Now, courtesy yesterday's Wall Street Journal, we learn that Deloitte is pioneering again—this time in altering work practices in recognition of the role that women leaders and professionals play at Deloitte's client organizations: " [Deloitte partner in charge of the project Cathy Benko] started exploring the issue while researching ways to retain and attract female employees. She teamed up with TrendSight Group, a Winnetka IL consulting firm, and after interviewing senior women executives and Deloitte employees, they concluded that the same discovery process women use when doing personal shopping applies to purchasing business services."
From this sprung a half-day workshop that, after initial skepticism, is being well received by men and women at Deloitte—and clients. Benko agrees that there is a fine line between improving communication approaches to women and appearing condescending, but the overall merit of the idea is sound and worthwhile, as women become almost dominant in the middle ranks of corporations where so many commercial purchasing decisions, adding up to trillions of dollars, are made.
(Full disclosure: Marti Barletta is founder and chief of TrendSight Group—I have relied on her research for years; she was in fact coauthor of Trends, part of a set of four small books, called "Tom Peters Essentials," that I released in 2006. Marti is also a Cool Friend.)
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