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Dyllis Hesse, Senior Managing Director, Accenture

Series: 

Be adaptable. Sometimes life takes you on a different path than you planned. Be open to the new experiences, embrace them and learn from them.  

Dyllis Hesse’s passion is leading diverse global teams to challenge the status quo and continuously improve service and experience. 

As a Senior Global Client Account Executive for a Fortune 500 Company in the hospitality and travel industry, Dyllis partners with clients to drive performance, growth and innovation. She has more 20 years of experience, helping leading companies and brands across the travel, consumer goods and retail industries with their digital transformations.  

Dyllis’ leadership style blends key capabilities of intellect, energy, optimism, and pragmatism. She works to set an exciting vision, and then bring the energy and collaboration skills to rally the team to deliver it flawlessly.  

Top tips

  • Be true to yourself. People see through fake exteriors. I spent many years living in Germany where being direct is a beloved part of the culture. I learned there, to be open and clear about challenges and struggles I faced. I found that when I shared my personal challenges with others, it connected us on a much deeper level. Through my vulnerability, they were able to relate to me, and then would often share their unsolicited advice—which I very much welcomed.
     

  • Make your voice heard. My leadership philosophy is that we need to create environments of diverse talent, which brings diversity of thought. As leaders, we need to invite our team members from all parts of our business, all backgrounds and all geographies to be at the leadership table. And those who are at the table must have the confidence to speak up and share their perspectives. Let your voice be heard even if you are not the most senior person in the room. 
     

  • Make your company and your role work for you. Over the course of having three children, I have needed varying levels of flexibility in my working model and role. I was fortunate to have taken six months of maternity leave for each child, and then worked part-time in different models. I was also able to work locally—which is a big deal after having children. All of this was because I asked for it. No one offered it. I just needed to ask—and then the firm helped make it happen.
     

  • Create a strong network. You never know when you will bump into someone again. Some of the people I met as a young analyst in London became very influential in my career later on in the US. Some of my mentors were helpful in moving me from London to Germany, and then to Atlanta. The world is a small place—cultivate those relationships early on as you never know when your paths will cross again.
     

  • Be positive in the face of challenges. I work with clients in the Travel industry. This last year has been the most devastating for these companies as many employees were furloughed or lost their jobs and the companies had to pause. It’s been a rollercoaster of a year. Staying positive, focusing on doing what we can do to help, and keeping ideas on how to bounce back stronger has kept the team and I going. I have a candle on my desk which says “Obstacles will always interfere with our plans. However, embrace the idea that what stands in the way becomes the way”. I’ve found it’s always way more energizing to be around people with positive can-do attitudes. 

 

the most valuable piece of advice SOMEONE HAS GIVEN YOU

Do what makes you happy. If you find joy in what you do, you’ll find it takes less effort, you’ll want to do more of it, and you’ll become better at it. I know I may not always be the best, the brightest, or the fastest, but if I enjoy what I’m doing and I’m persistent and positive, then it will be rewarding and fulfilling. 

Your key piece advice to someone looking to progress

Be adaptable. Sometimes life takes you on a different path than you planned. Be open to the new experiences, embrace them and learn from them.