Professor Dominic Houlderhelps the leaders of major professional service firms to strengthen creative connections with their clients and colleagues. He draws on his rare mix of experience as an alumnus of a leading strategy consulting firm, as an industry practitioner and as an educator and thought leader at London Business School. He offers insights into the ways in which senior professionals can connect with their clients through strategic conversations, and strengthen effective collaboration across their Firms’ own lines of service, geographical boundaries and external partner organisations. These creative connections counter the commoditisation threat now faced by many hitherto successful professional service firms.
Dominic also works with professionals to connect more strongly with their calling. Sometimes described as “the Buddhist Charles Handy”, Dominic draws on his many years of experience as an ordained spiritual practitioner to give confidence to those he helps so that they can engage with their own clients and colleagues with clarity about their convictions, fearlessness and compassion. Many of his learning methods have been developed through his close, 15 year association with London Business School’s Sloan Fellowship Programme. This programme attracts highly successful, senior professionals who are at career and life turning points and looking to make transitions into major leadership roles. The Sloan experience has allowed Dominic to weave together a perspective on success that combines impact with meaning.
He is currently working with PriceWaterhouse Coopers, SAP and Saatchi & Saatchi, where his engagements typically involve a mix of seminars, action-oriented workshops, client events and coaching and advisory roles at the most senior levels of the respective firms world-wide. He designed and leads London Business School’s new executive workout programme for B2B service businesses, “Unlocking Your Client’s Strategy”, and co-led the Australian Graduate School of Management’s consortium programme for the leadership teams of professional service firms including Ernst & Young, Goldman Sachs, Hewitt, KBR and Deacons. He has also worked with business and government institutions (including Deutsche Bank, the UK Ministry of Defence and British Airways) on developing strategic supplier relationships with their professional advisers.
Dominic studied at Cambridge University before starting his career with the Swire Group in 1979, working in the Far East and the United States. After taking his MBA at Stanford Business School he joined The Boston Consulting Group, advising senior executives in the UK, US, Spain, Scandinavia and Mexico. He worked with government agencies as well as corporations in sectors including food, aluminium, speciality steels, consumer finance, banking, shipbuilding, oil refining, textiles, nuclear engineering and offshore oil services.
He left The Boston Consulting Group to become Group Strategy Director at Blue Circle Industries plc in 1989. In this role he was responsible for managing the Group’s business planning systems, led merger and acquisition programmes and coached executives in the development and implementation of corporate and business level strategy.
He joined the London Business School faculty in 1994 where he teaches on Masters Degree and Executive Education programmes. He has led the development of Board-level initiatives within the School’s portfolio of top management courses, and won the School’s Distinguished Faculty Contribution Award for 2002 and Adjunct Faculty Teaching Award for 2003. He was Associate Dean of the Sloan Fellowship Programme from 2002-2005.
Dominic’s publications include the books Strategy and Mindfulness and Money, and articles including How Your Corporation Can Avoid a Mid-Life Crisis (Sloan Management Review) and Do Your Commitments Match Your Convictions (in Harvard Business Review).