This past weekend I had the opportunity to meet over 200 Accenture interns from across the country, Canada and Puerto Rico. For the past 22 years Accenture has hosted the Student Leadership Conference (SLC) for rising senior interns. This three day conference is full of team building activities, speakers, and fun activities such as talent shows, scavenger hunts, cosmic bowling and sand volleyball.
The three daylong conference took place in St. Charles, IL at the Q center. Since I am out of the Chicago office it was just over an hour drive, everyone else flew. The Q center is an old women’s college that is now used as a training facility. When you are hired on as a full time consultant at Accenture you spend 4 weeks training at the Q center. It had a great dining facility, super nice rooms, and a great campus complete with golf course Greene. While the facility was amazing, I was not there for vacation.
The trip consisted of listening to senior executives career paths and their views on leadership, technology (such as SAP, Oracle, Cloud), and break-out sessions where we learned how to better work as a team and be an effective leader. My favorite part of the whole weekend was all the team building activities which ranged from trust exercises to scavenger hunts. My team consisted of 16 people from all over the place. One specific activity required some people that could not talk, some who could not see and the rest tied together. We then had to complete a series of activities and puzzles while working together. After spending 45 minutes trying to help someone who could not see throw a ball into a bucket and lead them over stepping stones in a lake, new appreciation and friendships were built along with quite a few laughs. However the hardest part was working with 15 other motivated, type A, leaders. It sometime becomes difficult to let other be in control and take the lead, especially for me.
All in all it was a great weekend that taught me a lot about my leadership style and personal brand. Not only did I get to hear different intern experiences and client projects, I gained better insight into what a potential career would be like with the firm. Opportunities like the SLC are present in most big companies, don’t be shy and timid but really branch out and try and meet as many people as possible.
Here is the 2011 SLC video. The 2012 isn’t up yet but I was featured in it. So be sure to keep an eye out for it!
Until next time,