Global Perspectives Become Local Solutions
The U.S. Global Office Fellows Program broadens perspectives, networks and skills.
You know your career is on a great trajectory when working with senior leaders on developing global strategy becomes part of your job description. For the Deloitte U.S. Global Office (USGO) Fellows, those kinds of opportunities come up all the time. Just listen to Akanksha Talya, a manager in the Human Capital practice of Deloitte Consulting LLP (Deloitte Consulting), who was a USGO Fellow in FY13: “The experience was all high impact – and high energy,” she says. “Being a Fellow helped me better understand how our businesses operate here in the U.S. as well as how Deloitte works with other Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (DTTL) member firms to serve global clients. I acquired a lot of awareness of what the DTTL network does and the strategy behind it, which is always in the back of my mind when I assist my Human Capital clients. It was a great developmental move for me.”
Since it was established in 2011, the USGO Fellows program has provided more than 20 professionals in early stages of their careers with the opportunity to work with senior Deloitte leaders. The four- to six-month fellowship rotations are available to professionals up to and including managers from all functions and enabling areas of Deloitte, including those in India (USI) and Mexico (DCG). During the Fellowship, they step out of their current roles to work full time to acquire an enhanced global perspective they can take back to their teams.
“The USGO Fellows Program gives the next generation of Deloitte leaders the chance to understand the realities of delivering seamless cross-border client service,” says Bob Chapman, U.S. managing partner, Global, Deloitte LLP, and the leader of the program. “The Fellowship is a great opportunity for these professionals to gain insight into how Deloitte works with other member firms in the DTTL network – while expanding the Fellows’ own networks in the process.”
Taking global strategies local
USGO Fellows discover that the program does far more than teach them about global strategies and initiatives. They also learn how these strategies can be implemented at local levels here and abroad. “I was introduced to people all across the world with great ideas, and I got to see how people can turn a local strategy into one that engages across borders,” says Nathan Fabian, senior consultant, Deloitte Consulting, and FY12 USGO Fellow. “I also now know how to help teams successfully localize and implement global ideas in their offices, which in turn gives me ideas about how I could do the same.” Not bad for someone less than four years into his Deloitte career.
April Chen, a manager in Deloitte Tax LLP and a FY11 Fellow, notes that the skills and networks she acquired through the USGO program tie directly into her current role with the U.S. Tax Global Office. She was able to leverage the research and strategic development experience gained from her fellowship to help design and execute the U.S. Tax global strategy. “The type of strategic thinking and global perspective I honed during the program definitely carried over to my current role,” says Chen. “Everyone who goes through this program will gain an in-depth understanding of how Deloitte can bring its global strengths and capabilities to serve clients better – As One.”
That global perspective is a crucial aspect of the program and integral to Deloitte’s future success. “After all,” says Talya, “many of the companies we work with have offices throughout the world. Knowing how to think about how all of what we do ties together helps me understand how to do my Human Capital work better.”
The U.S. Global Office enables Deloitte professionals to show they can help U.S. divisions of multinational organizations spread strategy and specialized services to their offices in other countries. “The skills we gain through the program aren’t just your typical business skills,” says Fabian. “We also learn how to interact with a variety of people and to use dialogue to meet client needs. That type of experience is vital to my future success. It’s really wonderful that the program dedicates so much time to teaching us how to be better professionals in that sense as well.”
Real value in personal growth
Talya says her experience as a Fellow now informs all of her work. “The issues organizations face at a global level – maximizing profit value, developing relationships, understanding how our counterparts handle key issues – are the same as what our partners, principals and directors consider on a day-to-day basis,” she says. “After observing it on a global level, I’m able to add value to the conversations that my team’s leaders are having, and, in that way, to thank them for letting me step out of the practice for a few months so I am able to bring even more value back in.”
The Fellows all say the most valuable aspect of the program was the mentorship. “It wasn’t just that I had access to senior leaders,” Talya says, “it was also that I received one-on-one feedback and coaching to help me figure out how to activate what I had learned when I went back to my function – what skills and talents I bring to the table and how to articulate what I’m able to add now that I’m back in my practice again.”
Fabian agrees. “The program leaders really worked to make sure the program was beneficial, and that I was able to add even more to my practice,” he says. “I now have the skills and the confidence that enable me to stand up in front of my team and drive the conversations that get us the real value-add. The USGO Fellows Program taught me that.”