Nuance, Balance, and Team Players: Leadership Structure at AlphaSights

AlphaSights has a highly nuanced leadership structure. The company has formal leadership categories and designates Associates, Managers, Vice Presidents, and C-Suite leadership, but relationships between leaders and direct followers tend to be friendly and casual. Similarly, leaders and followers have an open and transparent relationship across the company, and senior leaders aim to get to know entry-level Associates and remain involved in the everyday company experiences. AlphaSights is divided into several teams, with some groups having sub-segments to better address company needs. The main teams at AlphaSights include Client Services, Client Protection, Marketing and Demand Generation, Brand Communications, Software Engineering, and Professional Development. Client Services has four main sub-segments divided by client base to meet the company’s service demands.

On my team, Client Protection, our Manager assigns each Associate weekly tasks. Each individual gets equal work and is expected to complete their respective assignments before the end of the day everyday. Assignments rotate weekly, allowing each team member to gain exposure to different operational procedures and ensure no one does overly repetitive work each week. Our Manager also delegates weekly and long-term projects to different team members depending on their interests, skills, and availability. For example, my one teammate Dylan is passionate about creating and improving software the team can use to ensure we work efficiently and accurately. Whenever an opportunity related to tech or software arises, my Manager tends to delegate the project to Dylan. If he were already working on several longer term projects, my Manager might offer the opportunity to anyone who has the interest and time or ask another team if anyone can help out. Overall, the work individual Associates do stems from their track record and specific interests; if an Associate consistently produces excellent work and is keen for more assignments, my Manager is sure to send opportunities their way.

Leadership styles of different team members are highly reflective of their personality. My Manager is very supportive, open, laid back, and fun, but other leaders in different teams and segments can be more task-oriented or seemingly less involved with each individual on their team. My Global Lead (Client Protection Vice President) is highly direct, organized, decisive, and opinionated; she will always be honest with team members about the quality of their work and will not withhold constructive feedback. At first, I was surprised such a relationship-oriented Manager and task-oriented VP could work so cohesively together, but over time I notice how the two leaders balance one another out and complement each other’s weaknesses. I am not as familiar with other leaders’ styles, but I understand each team has a distinctive personality type that thrives in the group. Client Protection tends to have more critical and long-term, patient thinkers, while other segments might be more competitive, high energy, and short-term thinkers. Nuance and balance are key to AlphaSights’ overall success as an organization because the company relies on different leaders and leadership styles to form an effective overall team.

AlphaSights promotes leadership development regardless of employee status. As an intern, I am encouraged to speak at meetings, ask questions, and provide feedback to my team Associates and Manager. I am assigned several short-term projects and one long-term presentation that will ultimately help the team rejuvenate some of its more outdated practices. AlphaSights relies on interns because we see the company with fresh eyes and a new perspective, allowing us to speak up and be leaders in the everyday environment. Overall, the company emphasis on individual potential to lead empowers Interns and Associates to take initiative to improve the company’s overall leadership balance.

One thought on “Nuance, Balance, and Team Players: Leadership Structure at AlphaSights

  • August 1, 2019 at 11:24 am
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    Really, really thoughtful and thorough reflection – nice job. You’ve really captured the work is structured, work flow is distributed, the style of those that you are most proximate with (wouldn’t expect you to understand the leadership style of those you don’t work with), and the extent to which everyone – including interns – are encouraged to contribute. Every time I read reflections from those interning at Alpha Sights, I continue to be impressed by the way in which the organization focuses on its employees development, the way in which they engage everyone, etc.

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