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Tale of Three Finance Teams

 Ashish Nanda, Lauren Prusiner, and Lisa Rohrer  
Product number:
HLS 10-14
9 pages
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January 16, 2009


How do you handle a team member who is underperforming - and assuage the client who suffers as a result? How do you encourage your team to work at full potential without making them feel burned out? How do you reconcile the interests of your team members with those of your client? The case presents three vignettes in which teams within a finance department at a mid-sized pharmaceuticals company are struggling with these issues. In the first vignette, a chief financial officer must figure out how to calm an angry client and deal with his project manager after the client expresses dissatisfaction with the manager’s leadership. The second vignette describes an overworked chief financial officer overseeing an exhausted team. In the third vignette, a finance department project manager leading a team confronts her chief finance officer about their client’s uncooperativeness and the unreasonable deadlines he has set for the team.   

Learning Objectives

Together, the three vignettes highlight the challenges of leading successful and effective teams in professional service firms.

Subjects Covered

Leadership, Work/Life Balance, Professional Services, Team Dynamics


Geographic: United States

Industry: Finance

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