A Culture of Colleague Support

By Jessica Marquez

Sep. 26, 2008

Being able to support colleagues is an essential attribute for Accenture employees, since so many of them work in teams that are spread out around the world. The culture of people helping one another, despite being thousands of miles away, is often a hard concept to grasp for new hires, says Janet Hoffman, managing director of Accenture’s global retail practice.

    “This was something I wondered about when I started,” she says.

“People genuinely want to help each other out.”
—Janet Hoffman,
Accenture’s global retail practice

    Hoffman recalls that on one of her first assignments, she was sent to Lyon, France, to help a client implement a software program. She had to explain aspects of the software program to an array of executives who were in five countries.

    “I didn’t know how I could get them all looking at the same software at the same time,” she says. “I just didn’t know what capabilities Accenture had to do this.”

    Hoffman sent an e-mail to a colleague, who then e-mailed a few more consultants. Within 24 hours, six people had gotten back to Hoffman with answers on how to present the software virtually. “People genuinely want to help each other out because we have all found ourselves in a position where we need help,” she says.

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