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The Art of Managing Professional Services: Insights from Leaders of the World's Top Firms

The Art of Managing Professional Services: Insights from Leaders of the World's Top Firms [Kindle Edition]

Maureen Broderick
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Product Description



Product Description

Today, millions of people work at over one million professional service firms generating over $2 trillion in revenue annually. These firms face unique issues that are not fully understood by management thinkers and consultants. Making matters more complex is that many of these firms stand at a crossroads, searching for new strategies and practices to succeed in a radically new economy. In The Art of Managing Professional Services, Maureen Broderick offers the solution.


Broderick has brought together modern best practices for these and other crucial areas of professional services management:


·    Building, communicating, and maintaining shared vision, values, and culture

·    Recruiting, training, and evaluating people

·    Crafting the right strategies, portfolio, and mix of clients

·    Innovating and sharing knowledge

·    Financial planning, metrics, and reporting

·    Positioning: brand, marketing, and sales

·    Defining effective partnerships: equity, selection, and compensation

·    Ensuring responsibility and accountability

·    Organizational design, structure, governance, and systems

·    Leading effectively, and growing the next generation of leaders


This book reflects Broderick & Co.'s unparalleled research into professional services management, including 200+ executive interviews with leaders and innovators in organizations of all sizes and types.


Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 2373 KB
  • Print Length: 320 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Up to 5 simultaneous devices, per publisher limits
  • Publisher: FT Press; 1 edition (24 Oct 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004GKN91M
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #163,954 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book 11 Feb 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This book is great and very up to date around issues and opportunities for managing a PS company. Very helpful in the understanding on how PS companies work and think.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.5 out of 5 stars  8 reviews
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Useful ideas for professional service providers 30 Dec 2010
By John Gibbs - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Professional service firms have very few places where they can turn for advice and best practices on how to run their businesses, according to Maureen Broderick in this book. The book aims to help rectify this by providing insights derived from more than 130 in-depth interviews with leaders of professional service firms in the fields of accounting, advertising, engineering, consulting, executive search, financial services and law.

Although the book presents some survey data, the survey process does not seem to have been particularly scientific. The firms were selected on the basis of being "acknowledged and respected by their peers", being amongst "the top-rated firms", and being cited by trade associations, rating companies and publications. Thus the content is better approached as a useful compilation of ideas, rather than as a rigorous analysis of industry best practices.

The book contains chapters on organizational values and culture, human resources, client relationship management, service offerings, financial management, marketing and sales, partnership and ownership structures, strategic planning, governance, and leadership style. Different professional services firms do things in vastly different ways, and I suspect that the author had difficulty in formulating a clear consensus on many of these issues.

Many of the firm managers interviewed described their professionals as "highly intelligent" and "extremely smart". Perhaps that is what you tell an outsider when asked about your firm, but the privately held views of those experienced in professional services firm management are rarely so effusive. This leads to a suspicion that there may be some systematic bias in the responses. For example, 92% of firms gave themselves high marks for how well they managed equity and compensation; clearly the responses were coming from the managers, rather than from those who were being managed.

Notwithstanding these issues, the book does contain some very interesting insights. The chapter on finance contained some revelations about different ways in which firms do financial planning, and different metrics which they use. The chapters relating to partnership and governance structures are also likely to be of considerable interest, as these can be contentious issues and it is always helpful to see how other firms approach them.

The book confirms the widely-held impression that professional services firms tend to do their own strategic planning very poorly, and do not recognize how increasingly critical a role good information systems play in a firm's profitability. Professional services firms also do very poorly with diversity, being strongly dominated by white males.

The author is correct in asserting that there is very limited information available on the best ways to run professional services firms, and for that reason this book will be essential reading for managers and leaders in such firms.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must-read for any PS leader 18 April 2011
By HC - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I have read dozens and dozens of business books in my life, but only a few of them come close to this one. The author succeeds in sharing philosophies from a multitude of highly respected leaders in the Professional Services Industry. After reading her book I feel that I have gained incredibly valuable insights.. not from one person, but from many. I found the book to be an easy read. With my short attention span I often quit reading after chapter two, however with this book I just kept on reading till the end. In my opinion there are only two books on Professional Services management that's worth reading. This one, and David Maister's Managing the Professional Services Firm. I suggest you read both, however if you have time for one book only, start with this one. It's more up-to-date and it's easier to read.
6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best New Book on Professional Services 2 Nov 2010
By Geoffrey Smart - Published on
"Broderick delivers more valuable insights per page than any business book that I have read in recent memory."
Geoff Smart, Chairman & CEO of ghSMART and co-author of the New York Times Bestseller Who: The A Method for Hiring.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good snapshot of what is happening today in the big service firms 2 July 2011
By Reg Nordman - Published on
A snapshot of what the big service firms are doing complied from an extensive survey . It describes best practice as detailed through numerous case studies. And it confirms that these companies are:

still slow to change,
focused on the short term, and
still totally clueless about marketing

None of the above will change. If you were expecting some priceless insights or new practice models you will be disappointed. A compilation of best practice is by nature not innovative. This book does not displace the great work done by David Maister, it goes to show that these companies are not even implementing his ideas.
3.0 out of 5 stars Well done compendium of information 29 April 2014
By C. Tilney - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
No startling insights here, but a good compendium of information from Professional Services firm leaders on what it takes across the spectrum of soft/hard skills to be successful
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Popular Highlights

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“Vision is where we are headed. Values are the behaviors we hold important, and culture is the feel, the energy, the buzz, the society within the organization.” &quote;
Highlighted by 21 Kindle users
People don’t collaborate with people they don’t trust, and people don’t trust people they don’t know, which is why leading firms invest much time and money in helping people get to know each other across practices and borders. &quote;
Highlighted by 20 Kindle users
The best PSFs achieve and maintain their competitive edge by attracting and retaining the most gifted people, who then attract and retain good clients with interesting work, which, in a virtuous circle, attracts the most qualified candidates. &quote;
Highlighted by 15 Kindle users

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