Rah Thomas
Cloud Solution Architect and Delivery Lead, African-American Employee Resource Group (ERG) Co-Lead
September 14, 2018

Coaching Football, Building Cloud Solutions and Being Myself


Whether I’m coaching youth football or migrating clients to the cloud, I know that success is about one thing: teamwork. It’s about valuing people for who they are and working together to achieve a common goal.

In fact, there are a lot of similarities between how I coach kids on the field and how Accenture works with clients. To help the kids understand the game of football, I simplify things, break them down to make them more efficient. That’s how we provide solutions for our clients at Accenture. We look at the big process, and we use technology to make it run better, faster and more efficient.

Analyze, streamline, innovate
Working with teams is one of the things I love most about Accenture. We build teams that gel together to deliver innovative solutions to our clients. We analyze their cloud environment and portfolio of applications, and we streamline processes and help them migrate those applications to the cloud. We then use robotics to execute the solutions to scale faster and more efficiently.

For example, consider the last time you called a help-desk service center. It can be a frustrating experience. To improve the process, we apply predictive analytics, and we use machine learning to drive efficiencies. We then use robotics to execute to scale, fast. The end result is a decrease in call volume, an increase in overall quality and an improved user experience.

Machines handle the mundane, lower-level capabilities so people can focus on experiences and end-user communications that bring more value to the customer. Automative intelligence offers the capability to do this faster and more efficiently. But it’s the people that make it work.

Who we are vs. where we work
We’re doing really cool, innovative work with leading-edge technology, but the best thing about working at Accenture is the people. Seeing people interact with and get inspired by innovation is what gets me going. I really love working with young people, listening to their (sometimes crazy) ideas and giving them the opportunity to shine and fly. And I’m passionate about being true to my authentic self.

I recently spoke at the 2018 Black Men XCEL Summit, which is a celebration and recognition of the contributions and achievements of black men. In my panel, Who I Am vs. Where I Work, we talked about one of the toughest challenges facing black men in corporate America: managing how others perceive them, and how to maximize your career potential without compromising who you are.

Whether we like it or not, appearances and perceptions matter. I learned that early in my career when I had to make a decision about my dreadlocks. Because of my culture, I can’t cut my hair unless there is a death or a birth in my family. As I got into corporate America, I needed to decide if it was going to define me, or if I was going to define myself.

I joined Accenture because I felt open to be who I am—because our leadership knows that bringing your whole self to work is the key to feeling empowered to succeed. When you feel open to be your true, authentic self, there’s no limit to what you can do.

Be yourself. Do work that makes a difference. Find your next career opportunity at Accenture.

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