How did the opportunity to transfer to one of Capgemini’s US offices come about?
I always wanted to live and work abroad at some point in my career and thought moving to the US would be a great opportunity as a Management Consultant. One of my London based colleagues did a stint with our New York office and passed on my CV to someone she knew in the US HR team to get the ball rolling. I then had a few calls with some of our American colleagues to talk about my client work and career goals before I finally heard confirmation of the transfer. My leadership team in London was fantastic and really supportive throughout the entire process.
What is your fondest memory of your time so far?
Probably heading to a cigar bar in downtown San Francisco with my new team. My boss ordered us all a round of 22 year old bourbon which made me realise I’ve come a long way since my university days where I would drink low budget supermarket branded vodka.
How does Capgemini in the US differ from the UK?
In the US a lot of Management Consultancy firms tend to only take on experienced hires and MBA graduates for their entry positions. So there isn’t really a formal undergraduate programme or CDC equivalent here. Also, as North America is a lot larger than the UK there is a lot more flying involved when working with clients based in other states. The sectors that you might work in can also be a bit different. For example there is more work in areas such as Telecommunications, Life Sciences and Biotechnology here.
As a recently graduated CDCer, what advice would you give to anyone thinking of joining the programme?
Although it is good to showcase any professional experience that you have throughout the recruitment process, to stand out you should be able to demonstrate that you are also bright, creative and good at working with people. The CDC programme is a great environment to learn in and has a good reputation inside the business for producing brilliant consultants, so if you can demonstrate those core soft skills then the business will be able to teach you the rest of what you need to know.
Now you are state-side, what do you get up to when you are out of the office?
I still feel like a tourist so whenever I get the chance I like to explore what my new hometown of Chicago has to offer. Whether that’s trying out Chicago’s signature deep dish pizza, listening to live blues music or going on an architecture boat tour on a canal by the city centre’s Loop district.
Lastly, and most importantly, what is your favourite American snack?
I’ll have to go with Chips Ahoy Oreo centred cookies.