Jenna Nowson

Managing Director, Management Consulting

Vancouver, Canada

"It’s about seeing how technology can add business value. But above all, it’s about client relationships."

What I do

As a Managing Director, I spearhead large-scale business transformations, mainly for clients in the retail sector. Change and program leadership are my specialities, and my job interweaves business and technology. Ultimately, though, I’m about people. I lead three key client accounts, and my clients are partners. It’s down to me to make relationships work—to understand the issues, and to solve them by acting as a conduit between clients and Accenture teams, and showing what technology can do.

My job is about cutting through complexity to solve problems on a big scale. Which, added to the prospect of working with people, was one of the attractions for me when I joined Accenture 16 years ago. Since then, as I’ve moved from the U.K. to Canada, I’ve worked on projects across all of Accenture’s core businesses. Now I’m in the retail space and couldn’t be happier. It’s dynamic. We all shop, so you can feel and touch what you do.

Learn more about Consulting Careers.

A day in my life

Every day is a juggling act when you’re leading three accounts. You have to be there for clients and manage and build the relationships, but also make yourself accessible to three teams of people. No team, there’s no client; no client, there’s no team. So I have to get to know team members, learn about them, help them develop and make sure they have the resources to deliver for clients.

I have to develop myself, too. I loved the concept of design thinking, to bring a more human-centered approach to problem-solving. I took a three-day course, and now I deliver design-thinking workshops for clients and bring these tools to my day-to-day work. I’ve also been on our Leadership Development Program.

I’m a wife and mother. Extensive traveling wasn’t practical, nor was I willing to compromise my family to become a managing director. My current role in Vancouver enables me to balance all the elements in my life.

“I love the concept of design thinking, bringing a more human-centered approach to problem-solving.”

My advice

Perceptions shift. In my opinion, there’s never been a better time for women to develop a career in technology. I would say, be bold in asking for what you want to be successful. If you don’t want to travel, say so. If you want a flexible schedule, ask for it.

Be open-minded and embrace risks. The more you’re willing to experiment and try new things, the more you’ll get out of Accenture. The possibilities here are infinite; build your network in order to take advantage of them. Our schools and training opportunities are great for developing new contacts.

Blog Post
How my Accenture Family Helped me Grow my Consulting Career

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