Case | HBS Case Collection | March 1998 (Revised April 1998)

Egon Zehnder International: Implementing Practice Groups

by Michael Y. Yoshino, Carin-Isabel Knoop and Cate Reavis


Since its creation in 1964, executive search firm Egon Zehnder International (EZI) marketed its consultants as "generalists." As searches became more global and industry-specific in the 1990s, CEO Daniel Meiland decided the firm needed to offer specialized services. By 1995, industry-specific practice groups were incorporated into EZI's organizational structure. The case examines how practice groups might affect EZI's ability to maintain its "one firm" egalitarian philosophy. A rewritten version of an earlier case.

Keywords: Business Units; Global Strategy; Leadership; Brands and Branding; Service Operations; Organizational Structure; Consulting Industry; Service Industry;


Yoshino, Michael Y., Carin-Isabel Knoop, and Cate Reavis. "Egon Zehnder International: Implementing Practice Groups." Harvard Business School Case 398-052, March 1998. (Revised April 1998.)