In my recent blog entry about communication, I recounted my Partner Meeting presentation last October in which I closed with the call for us to view ourselves as One Firm, and the importance of this vision to our long-term success. Our great firm was formed through mergers of many firms, recruitment of key experienced industry and service line professionals, and the employment of top students from college campuses. Many of our team members joined DHG because they saw us as One Firm, the whole of which is greater than the sum of our parts. Many of our clients have chosen to work with us because they saw the benefits of working with this One Firm.
I believe it is imperative that we remind ourselves what it means to operate with a One Firm mindset:
- We all share a part in the success of each other.
- We invest our resources throughout the firm, so both we and our clients, in all of our markets, benefit from a wide variety of industries and services.
- When a team member or a market is down, we collectively pick them up. Similarly, when a team member or a market is successful, we collectively celebrate.
- We all embrace change for the common good of the firm.
- We show respect for one another, and treat each other as a member of our extended family.
- We recognize that some DHG markets and practices will necessarily be different from our own, so that the firm can embrace all the opportunities in our expanded footprint.
- We protect the culture and personality of our firm, the same one that all of us sought when we joined this firm and decided to stay.
Today we can see this One Firm concept in action, creating better careers for our people while helping our clients achieve their goals. Here are some examples:
- We look beyond market and region boundaries when determining the best team members to serve a client. During the past year, especially in our industry practices, we had numerous examples of industry-trained professionals traveling from one market to another where there were specific needs.
- We are investing in new industries and service lines in a number of markets. For example, we have added Ben Sady in the Mid-Atlantic Region and Mike Bordoni in Atlanta to begin building our Risk Advisory practices in those regions. Steven Frank has relocated as a partner to Metro DC to expand our Transaction Advisory Services practice. And in June, we joined forces with the partners and team members from Cohen, Rutherford and Knight to bolster our Health Care practice in the Mid-Atlantic Region. More investments are in the works throughout all of our regions.
- In working with our clients on difficult issues, we consult with one another and with firm-wide resources in order to arrive at the best answer for the firm and our clients. Many of you do this every day, exchanging conversations about industry and business developments and how they impact your clients. We are a better firm because we can have these conversations.
- In our Partner, Leadership and Executive Committee meetings, we encourage open debate and discussion, and once consensus is reached, we execute the decisions reached together. Ken Hughes has often reminded us of the adage: “We have an obligation to dissent, but once consensus is reached, we have a responsibility to support.”
- When our people are in need, we join together and help them out. At various times during the year, our people find themselves needing to care for a family member who is sick; a routine response by our teams is to donate their vacation days to these team members, sometimes to such an extent that we get more than that person needs! During a recent national tragedy that impacted one of our team members, the entire firm (and our clients) rallied together to show our support for this person. It brought tears to many eyes, not only for the tragedy and the loss but for the response.
- Working together, in June we raised over 550,000 pounds of food with our Count the Cans campaign, helping to eradicate hunger throughout our footprint. We recognized the efforts of numerous markets for their creativity and passion in giving back to their communities.
This One Firm mindset is one of the many reasons I feel very blessed to be a part of DHG!