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Making Work More Human - A Q&A with ex-KPMG Partners 11/6

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A Q&A with Maggie Brereton and Ina Kjaer, ex-Big 4 Partners, shaking things up.
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I’m sorry I missed your AMA. Just want to say that Ina and Maggie are absolute LEGENDS. 🙌🏽

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What made you stick with a big four until partner? Obviously bad days & good days but what motivated you through it all?

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We will stop for now as it is late. Thanks everyone for the questions and for sharing your views with us. We know the changes we want are not to easy but we will push for them anyways.

likeuplifting

On the human part, what do you envision providing to new parents if you expand in the US? Specifically talking paid leave for both parents.

Do you sponsor work visas?

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I am still in the office answering your questions and really enjoying it (it is 9 pm in London!). Does it count as long hours?

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Let's talk numbers. Culture is nice, but how much will you be paying per level, what are utilization/revenue targets and how much anticipated sales do you have to be able to pay employees.

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We will be expanding to the US next year. Keeping in mind we are deals focused, where do you think we should have our first 3 offices?

likeuplifting

Let’s us know what one thing you would change tomorrow that would significantly improve your job life?

Has there been much difficulty getting your new firm off the ground because of non-compete-like agreements with KPMG? Difficulty in terms of both attracting talent and building a book of business

A lot of senior leadership say "trust the process". Where is the line between trusting the process and submitting to bad behavior?

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Love the vision. What has the client reception been like? Seems like it would nurture more relatable consultants, attuned to actual client needs.

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Would you have your employee’s back when the client turns nasty due to their insecurities and internal politics? How do you resolve such situations?

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What are your thoughts on the high utilization rate goals for SC/C/As? Seems like a terrible system to make junior practitioners accountable for what they have no control over

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We support leaders to change (or reconsider) their behaviours to promote mental wellbeing in the workplace. Very challenging so far. Would love to hear about other experiences of leadership culture.

How would you sum up the KPMG Culture at the Partner / Principle level in 3-5 bullets ?

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We are ready to start answering questions, so bring it on! #disruption #culture #hardquestions

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Why in consulting leaders feel proud to mention that they work 60-80 hours a week ? It’s common to hear “ I didn’t had my breakfast today “ or “ I slept at 4”

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Don’t all organisations go rigid once they grow big and the original founders move away? How can one ensure this doesn’t happen?

It's a refreshing approach Ina and Maggie have taken, greatly overdue. My question: How important is it to clients, that the firms they engage treat their employees well?

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Not here to ask a question but can I just say, after having a terrible male PML who several counselees later ended up filing a bullying complaint against, your story was an inspiration. Thank you.

likesmart

What is your approach to beating less human competition that has its consultants work 16+ hour days?

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What is your client/sales model? What is your strategy for growth? And what size workforce do you envision in the short term? Also, have you started hiring?

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Just read about you and have to say I would love to work with you/for you.

likesmart

What are your thoughts on a 4 day work week?

likeupliftingsmart

I specialize in a niche. I find that this niche has large ebbs and flows within consulting firms, and because of that I feel highly expendable. How do I create stability at an org in this environment?

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How has initial client feedback faired to your approach, and does this affect the profile of clients with which you can work with? (Ex-TS KPMG - huge respect for you both and excited 4 your venture!)

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Why is everything optics and a facade in consulting?

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Would love to work with you, for you and others like us. Let’s make this a success and reset the industry with this as the new normal.

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Appalling how disrespected "non consulting" folks are treated. Essential HR, Recruiting, IT are expected to perform like partners yet get paid like interns with no appreciation given. Please… more

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A lot of times, the answer to long hours and menial work for associates is that you are paying your dues. Even if the work is grunt work, how can we make the work feel more meaningful?

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Did the same thing last year - because the cultural issues aren’t limited to Big 4/MBB. (Major bullying and favoritism was rampant throughout both my prior ~$20M firms.) Biggest challenge for us was

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Does someone with an MBA have more opportunities than someone with an MS?

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I 💯 love this concept and fully support the founders. We need mega transformation in our own industry. We’re supposed to be agents of change .... let’s demonstrate that WE can.

likehelpful

Do you think the partnership model can survive? Is there a way to lower the turnover rate of employees through a different class of share ownership for “resources”?

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How can the culture of a consulting/client deliv. office be changed from bullying and exclusion to a healthy and inclusive one? My office has managers pushing this culture and they get away with it.

likehelpful

How do you see your new firm selling and working on more digital efforts?

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So cool and congrats! The focus on inclusivity is important. I’m wondering what other values/goals will be foremost? Climate sustainability is one close to me personally and I’m curious about that

How do we get more diversity in leadership? Gender, race, culture, all types of diversity. Looking at the top of the food chain typically results in rows of photos of middle aged white men...

likehelpful

Whats your thoughts on race equality and gender equality. Whats your approach in implementing fairness across the board?

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