For Corporate Service Leaders

This is the author’s website for the development of a new book by Richard L. Alexander. 

Why would you join this community?  If you want more for your team, your company and your career as a leader, you’ll find help here.  If you feel the frustration expressed by so many of your colleagues in all of the corporate internal-service departments, this site is for you.

Have you ever said any of these things out loud or just to yourself?

  • I am responsible for some part of my company’s internal services – Human Resources, IT, Purchasing, Finance, Legal…
  • My mission is to support my company’s ability to deliver its goods and services to our customers.
  • I know there’s more we could do with my service to secure customers, to optimize manufacturing operations, to improve our brand image on the internet – in short, to make my team a strategic contributor to our business.
  • I do not ever want my group to be seen as a bunch of ‘order takers’.
  • I want the proverbial ‘place at the table’ – to be engaged in my company’s core business and part of its strategic decision making.
  • I want to be certain that we really are creating value for the people we serve.
  • I want my internal customers to understand and appreciate what we do.
  • More than that, I want them to understand how we are linked to the success of their part of our business.
  • I want the people in my team to understand why things happen — why we choose one course of action and not another and what it means for them.
  • I want the people in my team to be proud of where they work.
  • I want my company to be proud of my group.
  • I want to know that I have done the best I can to improve my own professionalism – and with it, my future career.
  • Other than that – I don’t want much!

My name is Richard Alexander, and I’ve been in executive roles in IT for 20 years, including 9 years as the CIO of a Fortune-500 size division of a global manufacturing company, 4 years as director of IT strategy for several of the company’s global product lines, and 2 years as a leader of a major Supply Chain transformation.  I’ve felt those same frustrations myself and spent a fair amount of time working with my teams to learn ways to overcome them.  I’ve also worked with my colleagues in other corporate-service groups like Finance and H.R. to learn their best practices, and for this book I’m interviewing a broad cross-section of executives in all the internal-service disciplines across the United States to bring their experience and wisdom into the mix.

The blog pages of this site are meant to be a place where we can share best practices for governing your team’s priorities and communicating inside your company.  I’d love to hear your stories and your ideas, but also to hear the questions you have about the specific situations you face in your operations and the leadership of your teams.

Many other books talk about how to build your personal credibility as a leader.  There are books to help improve your conversational skills and construct “elevator speeches” to sell your ideas.  There are books on how to “win hearts and minds” during times of great change, and how to communicate internally with the members of your team.  But I have found no other book that offers step-by-step processes and practical tools for building the credibility and image of a corporate internal-services department.  This book — and this website — are meant to fill that gap!

Thanks for reading.  Please get in touch if you have ideas to share in this forum, or if you have a leadership story you’d like to share in a blog post or in the book I’m developing.

Best regards,

Richard