Human Resources Business Partner | QLD
Helena Daley is an Account Director in ACT with several clients in the government sector. She often finds herself in the middle of her client and ASG, trying to work out solutions that satisfy both parties. That’s no easy task but, as a student of both wine and Taekwondo, she’s had plenty of practice in striking the perfect balance.
WHAT IS YOUR ROLE AT ASG AND WHAT DOES YOUR ROLE ENTAIL?
I am an Account Director looking after three significant federal clients in the ACT. Overall, I have commercial and contractual responsibility for our relationships with my clients.
Primarily, it is a sales and commercial negotiation role, selling new business to our clients and renewing business as the managed service contracts come up. It is also a mediator role – I bring together the client requirements and ASG’s capability and find solutions that work for both parties.
WHO ARE YOU COLLABORATING WITH MOST ACROSS THE BUSINESS TO MAKE IT ALL HAPPEN?
Everyone! Primarily the Service Delivery Managers and Regional Delivery Managers, Project Managers, ASG commercial lawyers and Resourcing, and then of course the Architects and technical specialists to help with scoping and solutioning. On the client side I work with senior IT executives, business executives, contract management, project management and technical people. It is a very collaborative role.
WHAT'S BEEN OE OF YOUR BIGGEST CHALLENGES OR CAREER HIGHLIGHTS?
Not quite sure how it happened, but I tend to specialise in turn-arounds. The political machinations that our clients face demands constant flexibility under extreme scrutiny. It can be a challenge for corporate entities to understand. Through-out my career I’ve joined companies at a time when they’ve had to re-build. Be it Compaq with their relationships with channel partners, Gartner in a depressed and saturated market or ASG after a period of growth which caused delivery challenges. This has provided me great opportunity to improve service. The secret to success is to put yourself in someone else’s shoes and understand the challenges they are facing. Then can you truly add value.
THE ROAD BACK TO NORMAL, INCLUDING GETTING BACK TO WORK, LOOKS DIFFERENT FOR EVERYONE AND HAVING KIND AND UNDERSTANDING MANAGERS AND A SUPPORTIVE WORKPLACE IS SO IMPORTANT.
WHAT’S YOUR FAVOURITE PART ABOUT WORKING AT ASG?
The grit and tenacity in the company’s culture. I’ve had 17 years in the IT industry in various Sales, Business Development, and Account Director roles. I also took eight years out of the industry and was working in private equity doing company acquisitions, so, my first involvement with ASG was actually as a shareholder! Something I focused on while doing my Master’s in Governance and Entrepreneurship was how you grow an entrepreneurial company while still maintaining good governance, and I could see that theme in ASG. I was drawn to the way it had a tight management structure but also an entrepreneurial bent. ASG aren’t afraid of doing things a bit differently.
Furthermore, there are some really lovely people here. The Executive Leadership Team are approachable which is really important., and I’m surrounded by smart people that work hard and are committed to their roles which contributes to my satisfaction and success.
WHICH OF THE ASG VALUES RESONATES WITH YOU MOST?
Grit. Working in the government space, you must continually prove and reprove yourself and justify your existence almost every day. Luckily, that fact suits my pedantic and driven work style. Unlike commercial sales where close relationships can seal the deal, government has to be absolutely scrupulously clean in their decision-making process. There are, no feelings or goodwill involved. If they’re our clients don’t choose not going with the cheapest option, they have to justify why the extra spend is necessary. So, Grit comes in to play because you just have to get in there, hang on, be flexible, be consistent, and reliable. You need be ready to be in the right place, with the right relationships, and have the right product at the right price, each and every time.
WHAT MOTIVATES YOU IN YOUR ROLE? WHAT ARE YOU PASSIONATE ABOUT?
Above all, I’m passionate about doing a good job. I like to connect the dots and create something new that nobody has been able to do before, bringing together two ends that wouldn’t necessarily meet. I’m also always thinking about creating efficiencies to help, whether for ASG or for the client, and improving the way that people operate. I do this best by understanding drivers, meaning not just looking at what people want to do but the reason why they want to do it.
HOW ABOUT OUTSIDE OF THE OFFICE – ANY HOBBIES OR TALENTS YOU’VE BEEN WORKING ON?
I’m a bit of a gym junkie, my husband and I are into the storage and cellaring of wine, and I’m also a black belt in Taekwondo. It took me six years to get to black belt however my journey to improvement isn’t over as there are multiple levels of black belt to achieve. I do it for fun and for physical fitness but also for the mental fitness benefits that come along with learning the patterns, keeping agile, and being quick to respond.
WE HEARD YOU MENTION WINE!
Well, this is morevmy husband’s hobby that I benefit from! It’s nice to have the right pairing of food and wine, it adds to the enjoyment of getting together with friends for dinner. I’ve done wine appreciation courses, but I don’t take it too seriously. For me, it is just an added benefit. My favourite pairing? Pinot with duck.