Aimie Chapple is the Managing Director of Accenture’s Management Consulting Business in the UK and Ireland, and is the president of the MCA.
Every year she revaluates her career choices and for twenty years the answer has been the same: Accenture – “I’m a big believer in choosing to do what you do every year. So stop and take stock and see whether you’re enthused about what you are doing and if you are contributing, and make a choice. Once you make a choice, go forward and evaluate again in a year. That’s the philosophy that I’ve taken.”
What is your biggest achievement in your career?
“When I look back and I think about being the Managing Director of Management Consulting today at Accenture, that’s the moment I’m excited. I had a colleague who used to be my boss who turned around to one of the older partners and said “Aimie now runs everything that used to be the firm that you joined.” And I got a big gulp in my throat and I thought “Oh my god really?” Because Accenture has become so much more diverse; I do now run the UKI version of (almost) everything that was the firm that I joined – and that’s quite amazing. I’m really proud of it.”
What’s the biggest challenge coming for consulting in the next twelve months?
“Learning how to live in this new normal is something that we’ve been doing and I think that the next twelve months are very clearly more of the same.
“Most organisations at the beginning of the journey to becoming fundamentally digital. It’s a huge challenge for business. It’s about thinking about how you are going to interact with your customer, whether your customer has choice, and if you can interact in that digital format from beginning to end. I think companies will need to be more agile and more ready to deal with what this next wave is going to bring us.”
What’s different about consulting in the UK?
“What I love about consulting in the UK is the fact that the economy itself is quite vibrant in terms of the kinds of companies that choose to be head quartered here, or chose to have offices and work here. So there’s a real diversity of work that people can get involved with in the UK.
“I think it’s an exciting economy, extremely diverse for the size of the land mass; the diversity and the brilliance of what happens here is great and attracts real talent.”
What tip would you give to someone just starting out in the consulting industry?
“If you are just starting out, try and continue to say yes to as many things as people ask you to do. Try and look towards what the career can offer, even if it’s not what you imagined you might be doing. Continue to say yes and think about creative ways that can help you say yes.”
“What I’ve found every time I’ve gotten to a point where I’ve achieved my goals, is that there’s a fantastic new one in front of me. Both through the kind of roles I get given or through the projects that I’ve worked on, which means that I continue to stay engaged in the career. Maybe one day I’ll do something else. But over 20 years it’s become a fantastic part of my life. “
What do you want to achieve as president of the MCA in 2012?
I’m really excited about the buyers forums and making sure that we as an industry understand what our clients want from us, and we engage in that process.