"Shall we dance?"

For Accenture, this old adage is true: first impressions last. That’s why those engaged in the initial meetings with client executive leadership convey Accenture’s client-centricity: establishing trust, understanding challenges, demonstrating industry expertise, and introducing data-driven and innovative solutions.

Serving as a first point of contact for potential clients is why Sig Shirodkar, Managing Director for Health, Life Sciences and Public Service considers each inaugural meeting as though it’s his first.

"I am acutely aware that Accenture’s reputation precedes every one of my first meetings with potential clients and it’s my responsibility to confirm that we listen, learn and understand a client’s needs first," said Sig. "Accenture’s brand and consultants are regarded highly, which provides us authentic opportunities to forge new relationships."

After immigrating as a pre-teen to New York City from India with his family, Sig graduated with a B.A. in philosophy and political science from New York University (NYU). His natural proclivity for providing client service intersected with his original interest in the healthcare industry during his first, post-graduate position in Hospital Administration at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. Sig rounded out his health focus by moving to Empire BlueCross BlueShield and then on to healthcare and life science consulting. Along the way he returned to NYU for an M.P.A. in Health Policy and Management and subsequently earned his M.B.A. from Columbia University.

Sig keeps abreast of the multiple mergers and acquisitions by retailers– many of whom are non-traditional deliverers of health payer or provider services– expanding their portfolios into new lines of business. As the number of new entrants into the healthcare industry steadily grows, recognition of the intricacies of federal and state regulations, complexities of introducing new technological platforms, and how to position themselves within the industry becomes apparent. Sig knows that Accenture is well positioned to welcome these new disruptors to enable change across the healthcare system.

He leverages both his client service relationship skills and his healthcare industry expertise when meeting with potential clients.

"Businesses venturing into or expanding their healthcare services portfolio sometimes think that Accenture’s expertise rests only within IT systems or technology," said Sig. "I have the opportunity to introduce them to what an enterprise transformation with Accenture looks like given our comprehensive capabilities, assets, experiences, and human- centered focus not only across the health industry, but also across every new and known industry and business function."

When he first started consulting as a new industry hire, Sig was assigned to work with an actuary leader on a merger-integration project. The client was initially anxious, as the project required the consolidation of his department resulting in the loss of several team leaders. Sig invested in building a rapport with the client, which proved to assuage concerns and allowed the team to design a work-centered, operating model for the leader to deliver to his C-suite leadership. After clearing that initial hurdle, Sig embedded with the client and his organization until the integration was successfully completed a year later.

More recently, a leadership team embarking on a "Big T" transformation in the healthcare industry having had starts and stops with other consultancies displayed similar hesitancy. Sig focused on their goal of reorganizing without compromising their budget, delaying their launch timeline or disrupting services. Sig offered a preliminary assessment of what developing new ways of working, introducing new technology platforms and offering new services entailed and how Accenture’s capabilities were well suited. The executives conferred and then agreed that Accenture was the firm best suited to address each stage of their new venture.

"It’s a function of my role to provide an overview of the steps that clients may have to undertake, how Accenture crafts solutions uniquely suited for them, and being empathetic towards their apprehension towards the new - similar to learning how to dance with a new partner," said Sig. "Accenture walks the talk by repeatedly demonstrating our ability to anticipate future business needs. To be in the business of preventing disease, restoring health, and improving lives of the population is a worthy profession that I find professionally and personally satisfying."

When not traveling the globe, Sig savors every moment spent at home with his wife and two sets of twins under the age of 13. He happily shares his knowledge with and supports the interests and activities of his wife, son and daughters. Drumming, golf and discovering high-end, consumer technology also keeps him happy and balanced.

Accenture walks the talk by repeatedly demonstrating our ability to anticipate future business needs.

Sig Shirodkar

Managing Director – Talent & Organization/Human Potential Services for Health, Life Sciences and Public Service

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