Published in the November/December 2010 issue of print Search & Employ® |
Even though he retired from the Air Force several years ago, William “Shoes” DelGrego is still very much connected to the military life. Currently a vice president (U.S. Federal) with Accenture, the retired colonel also has another role in the company he takes seriously.
“I’m currently the military community lead for Accenture,” DelGrego said. The military community at Accenture is much more than just a nod or handshake in the hall between veterans. Each main office has a group of veterans who meet regularly to talk about everything from their current jobs to what they would like to do in the future.
“We get together and talk about ideas and what we can do to give back to the community,” he noted. “It’s not just a support group; we also try to be proactive and help current and former military members.” For example, the New Jersey Accenture office came to the aid of a woman who was trying to keep in touch with her Afghanistan-deployed son. The effort was costing her $600 a month, which she couldn’t afford. Accenture’s military community raised money to buy nearly $12,000 in calling cards for the USO to donate to people trying to reach their deployed loved ones.
“We’re also involved in Honor Flight and Toys for Tots,” said DelGrego. “We like to be involved with the general community, but especially the military community.”
A lot of that goes back to the core values that veterans bring from the military, but it’s also part of Accenture’s culture and core values. “Like the military, we at Accenture are about mission, not money,” DelGrego declared. “Our core values are very similar to what you’ll find in every military unit.”
Accenture is a global management consulting, technology services and outsourcing company. The company’s 190,000-plus people serve clients in more than 120 countries. Of the organization’s top 100 revenue clients in fiscal year 2009, 99 have been clients for at least five years, and 91 have been clients for at least ten years.
“The company’s core values have shaped the culture and defined the character of our company, guiding how we behave and make decisions, said DelGrego. “Those values include stewardship, best people, client value creation, one global network, respect for the individual and integrity.”
Attention to those core values is among many reasons Accenture has for hiring veterans, according to DelGrego. “We need to stay in touch from a federal perspective to what is really going on in the DoD and intelligence communities,” he said. “Also, military members have a lot of great experience—more than they realize. Multiple moves and handling new jobs every few years ha s helped them to adapt to stress very well. There’s also the leadership experience they get. A six-year veteran in the military might have already led a group of 20 to 25 people. Most people in civilian jobs don’t get a chance to do that at that age. It’s a huge plus.”
Accenture is currently in a period of growth. “When I arrived in 2007 we had 130,000 people, and we recently reached 200,000,” DelGrego said. “When the economy went bad, Accenture didn’t release people; we balanced our workforce areas to better utilize our people.”
The former F-4 and F-15 pilot said that the company is on the lookout for people who don’t want just a job at Accenture, but a career. “We all get into jobs where things don’t go quite as planned and we’re not as happy as we want to be,” he said. “But when that happens at Accenture, we help people find other roles within the company where they can be happy and still provide value to the company. The opportunity to grow in a career and to excel is part of working at Accenture.”