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»The 2011 Best Small Firms to Work For: 1) Stroud Consulting
For the second year in a row, and the third time in four years, Stroud Consulting takes the top spot in Consulting’s Best Small Firms to Work For ranking. Once again, Stroud Consulting was incredibly consistent—securing the top spot in five of the six facets of the survey.
One of the reasons for the firm’s continued success, says Nathaniel Greene, CEO of Stroud Consulting, is the firm’s ability to drive strong growth throughout the downturn and slow market recovery we’re seeing this year. “Businesses have had to strive for levels of performance that were not needed before, finding and realizing opportunities where none were thought to exist,” Greene says. “This is our specialty at Stroud, so it has helped us have more conversations with interested people, leading to new clients.”
In fact, Greene says one senior executive at a client company recently told him as much. Greene, of course, is proud of this type of feedback—and his firm’s ability to execute and deliver to clients.
“The consulting industry often lacks credibility when it comes to execution, Greene says. “As operations consultants, we take a very hands on approach to ensure the results are delivered and sustained. Our clients value this bias for results and we build great lasting relationships with them. All of our consultants work side by side with client teams and are responsible for delivering specific results that will positively impact the operations of that client.”
And there’s another benefit to this approach. The opportunity of early responsibility, he says, coupled with great support results in Stroud consultants developing faster than their peers.
Not surprisingly, top-notch talent, an impressive roster of Global 1000 clients and individual personal and professional development leads to Stroud being a great place to work year in and year out.
“Our culture is one based around “Abundant Thinking” and a firm-wide belief that everyone is a teacher and everyone is a student,” Green says. “Abundant thinking is the belief that there is significant opportunity to improve the performance of every process, person and organization—coupled with the insatiable desire to see this opportunity realized.”
But it’s not just the culture that’s worth noting. Stroud also far outpaced the competition when it comes to Career Development, a category that can often take a backseat at other firms Stroud’s size. Greene says part of the reason for the success is that every week there are “multiple opportunities” for consultants to get help building the skills and mindset needed to advance.
“Our firm-wide investment in career and personal development has continued to reach new levels,” he says. “People recognize the rapid development of their skills and have the opportunity to apply them and advance rapidly.”