Colin Ryan, Strategy Consultant, Accenture

Colin Ryan, a Strategy Consultant at Accenture, gives his career advice.

I started out studying Engineering but decided after a year that the IT industry was the biggest growth sector and changed courses.

A turning point

Seven years into my career I decided to take part in the UCD Smurfit MBA programme. I was able to develop strong business knowledge and analytical skills while making friends with a number of professionals working across public and private sectors. This provided me with a great platform for my continued career in business consulting.

Career highlight

This year I was part of a small team that created the Accenture Leaders of Tomorrow Award, a nationwide competition that seeks to identify, develop and recognise leadership skills and potential in Irish graduates. I was really proud of what we achieved with the competition and the calibre of the people we were helping to develop.

Advice for graduates

The most successful people I know are those who know their strengths and use them in pursuing a career that is aligned to their personal interests. I would also say never be afraid of changing direction and facing new challenges.

Skills for future leaders

Leaders of tomorrow’s Irish businesses will face a different competitive landscape. Successful leaders will be those who focus on continuous learning and development and who understand the value of innovation and the importance of people as the real enablers of any organisation.

Colin has a BTech from University College Dublin, an MSc from Trinity College Dublin, and an MBA from UCD Michael Smurfit School of Business.