Spectra Meets: Rene Germain

NAME: Rene Germain

EDUCATION: International Business at Loughborough University

JOB TITLE: Digital Delivery Analyst at Accenture


DESCRIBE YOURSELF IN THREE WORDS

Energetic, ambitious and resilient

WHAT’S YOUR STORY?

My name is Rene and I’m an only child of Caribbean heritage. I graduated from Loughborough University with a 2.1 BSc in International Business in 2016. I went straight into Goldman Sachs, working in their Operations Middle office, following a one year placement I had completed with them in 2014. However, after a year I made a career switch to technology consulting and started at Accenture 1 year ago.

Growing up, between the ages of 14-16 years old, I wanted to be an actress. I developed a Iove for Shakespeare, and performed the lead roles in several Shakespeare plays at The Lyric Theatre, Richmond Theatre, and Queen Elizabeth Southbank theatre. I also wrote and performed my own dramatic monologues.

I took a gap year following my A levels to pursue my interest in Music and TV. Whilst I didn’t want to be in front of the camera, I loved the idea of working on the more business side of things behind it. I bombarded all the major record labels and TV stations with my CV and cover letter via email, post, and even visited them all!! After months of rejections and no replies, I secured my first ever internship at Channel 4 and did some social media promo work for Dizzee Rascals Label –  Dirtee Stank recordings. Channel 4 offered me a full-time job but I decided I wanted to go university.

My parents, grandparents, uncles and aunties always instilled a strong work ethic in me. Despite not having much, my parents always encouraged me to never use that as an excuse. For example, I never had a computer / laptop until I started university and could use my student loan to buy one, so I used to go the internet café / library every day after school and on weekends to type up my coursework. I will forever be grateful to the internet café owners in Shepherds Bush who would sometimes allow me to print my coursework for free.

Once I started university, due to the nature of my course, I quickly became interested in banking and finance, going beyond what I was learning in my lectures but doing my own reading and research. I did a spring internship in the IBD division of Credit Suisse, then a year later I embarked on my placement year in Operations at Goldman Sachs. Following my placement, I did an internship at Barclays, as an Innovation and Strategy intern for their Barclaycard business. After graduation  I returned to Goldmans.

WHAT DOES YOUR JOB ENTAIL ON A DAY TO DAY BASIS?

It depends on my actual project and role. With consulting, everything few months you’re on a new project.  In my first project as a Junior Project Manager on an Open Banking project, I was creating project plans, having daily calls with UI/UX designers, testers, developers to check progress, helped to create User journeys. Now I’m an Adobe Experience Manager product specialist so my days are very different.

I love that every few months, I start learning about something I had no understanding of before. In addition, I love that I can physically see the outcome of my work.  For example, I just redesigned 30 webpages for my client. These pages went live last week. Now, when I visit their website, I can see the pages I created and millions of their customers can as well.

WHAT ARE YOU PASSIONATE ABOUT?

I’m most passionate about helping people younger than myself navigate their way into the working work. I spend a lot of my free time mentoring sixth form and university students via the Stephen Lawrence Charitable trust, The University of Greenwich Business school and most recently the SEO HerCapital programme.

I’m currently putting together a book for black students and early stage professionals. It will feature interviews with 20 successful black professionals talking about the highs and lows of their careers, bouncing back from failure and advice on how those of us starting out can win in these environments which weren’t necessary created for us. I received my first submission last week and I’m super excited to read more. Follow me on twitter (@rianyon92) to keep up with developments and the launch dates.

WHAT’S THE BEST ADVICE YOU’VE BEEN GIVEN?

The race is not for the swift but for those that can endure it – it’s not really advice but it’s a great reminder that it’s not always about speed when trying to achieve something.

WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU LIKE TO GIVE TO YOUNG WOMEN WITH SIMILAR ASPIRATIONS?

Comparison is the thief of joy, so don’t compare yourself to others: Everyone’s journey is so different and what works for one person may not work for You. March to the beat of your own drum.

Trust your gut: When I decided to move from banking to consulting, a few people told me that I was making a bad decision. But my gut told me different and it was right.

Stay authentic: Proceed in a way that is true and authentic to who you are as a person.

Keep learning, keep asking questions: It’s ok to be stuck, to be unsure, and to simply not know, but make sure you ask questions (no matter how small or silly they may seem) and keep updating your skills. There’s loads of free/affordable online courses on platforms such as Udemy, Open University, Coursera, LinkedIn learning and more. Don’t become stagnant.

WHERE DO YOU SEE YOURSELF IN 5 YEARS?

In 5 years’ time, I see myself still learning, still growing and continuing to do something I love, whether its consulting or something different.

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