Rob talks with us about the power of trust and transparency, the importance of diverse backgrounds in consulting, and the challenges he’s conquering
Rob Roy, a data & analytics consultant in our Denver office, is devoted to thoroughness. He believes you can’t ask too many questions or provide too much information. His honesty and holistic approach to challenges build trust with clients and help provide the best solution. Rob is always leveling up his knowledge and skillsets. He’s even teaching himself how to utilize Python in data and analytics in his free time. He recently moved to Denver (and doesn’t miss the Georgia heat) and spends as much time outdoors as he can with his dog Milo.
How did you find your way to consulting and Propeller?
I come from an industry consulting background, implementing enterprise resource planning (ERP), human capital management (HCM), and supply chain platforms. In industry, the experience and opportunities are usually verticalized, meaning you can learn and become very knowledgeable about a unique subset of topics. I was interested in getting into management consulting to broaden my expertise and become a more well-rounded consultant.
Propeller was a diamond in the rough. The company popped up on LinkedIn, and then in the multiple top small consulting firms lists I scoured through, Propeller was always mentioned. I thought, maybe this is the opportunity to jump.
What do you like about consulting?
That nothing is the same! I don’t enjoy monotony, and I don’t like a lot of repeated tasks, or at least repeated ambitions. With management consulting, there are always new challenges and opportunities to level up your knowledge and be exposed to new industries and areas. My first project was teaching a client how to become more agile, and my next engagement was completely different and centered around organizational transformation. I wouldn’t have been able to get that type of nuanced exposure in industry consulting.
“With management consulting, there are always new challenges and opportunities to level up your knowledge and be exposed to new industries and areas.”
What are you working on right now?
Right now, I’m working with a few other Propeller consultants at a global retailer within their transformation and operations team. We’re focusing on ensuring that when the organization goes through a transformation, they’re doing the process correctly and in alignment with other affected teams across the organization. Basically, ensuring they’re following through the future state org process from strategy to activation. We’re also building out better ways to report those changes and standardize the process for the transformations to occur more efficiently. We’re changing people’s lives and it’s rewarding to see the changes and new roles and positions we’re putting in place for the future.
What stands out to you about working at Propeller?
Propeller doesn’t go with the cookie-cutter approach when it comes to finding talent. We have people who are former clinical psychologists, people who are musicians and artists, as well as individuals with MBAs, consulting, and business backgrounds. I think what our founders realized is that expertise comes from different areas, not just business, but from very functional areas. I think that’s what makes a great consultant. Someone who’s actually lived that knowledge and not just understanding it from the business side. And we’re pretty diverse as people, as well. People are genuinely passionate about diversity and making people’s lives better. The effort that Propeller takes into being an employee-centric firm is very genuine and is not as common in a lot of the conventional consulting models I’ve seen in business.
“Propeller doesn’t go with the cookie-cutter approach when it comes to finding talent. We have people who are former clinical psychologists, people who are musicians and artists, as well as individuals with MBAs, consulting, and business backgrounds.”
What makes you a good consultant?
Transparency. I listen and learn. I don’t feel like I have to know everything, because every situation is different. And empathy. While we may feel like we know the customer situation, we may not know the nuances of the company, how their c-suite functions, how managers work, or how they make decisions. We can’t come in with a one-pronged approach. I lean on listening, empathy, and transparency.
“I listen and learn. I don’t feel like I have to know everything, because every situation is different. We can’t come in with a one-pronged approach. I lean on listening, empathy, and transparency.”
You moved to Colorado mid-COVID, how are you building connections with others?
Propeller’s many social events and the offsite really helped bring in a human element. Especially since many of us work together every day but haven’t met in person. There are ways we can connect internally, too. There are multiple Slack channels that remind us that we’re all still human beings.
There’s a BIPOC channel that brings some sense of a community to groups that feel like they’re just a small portion of the entire firm. It creates some sense of relation between me and the next person. Also, managers are genuinely interested in your life. How things are outside of work, my well-being, my mental health, and ensuring I have everything I need to be successful
What’s your favorite ethos and why?
“Embrace Our Differences.” The dynamic backgrounds and personalities of everyone at Propeller have been valuable differentiators. We are empowered and encouraged to leverage our individuality. Not every consultant at Propeller comes from a business background—Propeller seeks out thought leaders first. That is what makes us more than great consultants. Propeller recognizes that and embraces our differences.
“Not every consultant at Propeller comes from a business background—Propeller seeks out thought leaders first. That is what makes us more than great consultants. Propeller recognizes and embraces our differences.”
What do you like to do outside of work?
I like to spend my free time outdoors with my dog Milo, a Boxer Lab mix. He’s always by my side. We’ll go hiking in the mountains. I enjoy the solace and appreciate being disconnected from social media—just in my own world for a while. I am also a whiskey hobbyist and enjoy tasting and collecting hard-to-find bourbons.
To wrap things up, I have a few rapid-fire questions::
Salty or Sweet?
You’re a bourbon connoisseur, what’s your favorite bourbon?
A Midwinter Nights Dram by High West
What are you reading right now?
Born a Crime by Trevor Noah and The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle
Dream Vacation Spot?
How would friends describe you?
Empathetic, funny, and honest
Favorite thing to do in Colorado?
Being outside, hiking, and snowboarding (except the falling)
Celebrity you’d like to have coffee with?
Will Smith or Jay-Z