Pop Quiz, Monday with Natasha Norton, Chief Executive Officer at Accuteque

Natasha Norton

The Pop Quiz, Monday is a fun little exam that we love to give to savvy business owners. The examination is not a surprise after all since the interviewee already knew about the questions in advance. However, we can always pretend and have fun with the scenario of a young entrepreneur sitting in class nervously biting on their pencil. They are ready to take a pop quiz on a chapter that they were supposed to read the night before. Instead, they played Metroid all night on their SNES (Oops, this was me in high school). The real purpose of the pop quiz is that this is a fun way to introduce business tips from real-world experiences that you can not learn in a classroom. We want to thank our entrepreneur for being a good sport and volunteering their time to answer a few questions to help our community grow from their knowledge.

I want to introduce you to our guest today who will be taking our Pop Quiz Monday.

Can you please tell everyone your name?
Natasha Norton

Natasha Norton
Photo credit: Natasha Norton

What is your job role?
Chief Executive Officer

Tell us about your company?
Accuteque is an Australian owned & managed Professional Services firm that has a client-centric approach.
We have been providing professional services to organisations throughout the world for over 16 years. Whilst we call ourselves a Professional Services firm today, it’s important to note that we started as a professional testing services company with both local and international clients. Accuteque has in a brief amount of time grown into a full-service consulting business with a highly skilled group of industry experts available to our clients.
We aim to partner with organisations to help define where they want to go. Refining their operations to get there and do it with the right controls in place— without stifling progress.

What do you love most about your job?
First and foremost our team. We’ve been very lucky to bring together a group of like-minded people, who are comfortable challenging each other, who love delivering excellent results to our clients and who are always looking to develop our internal competencies.

What motivates you to get up every day and go to work?
Outside of the team, which I’ve mentioned before. It is the challenge of growing a Professional Services firm, that bats well above its’ weight and that is focused upon growing its’ thought leadership and credentials across many products and services.

How do your co-workers inspire you?
They are always up for a challenge. Everyone on the team is comfortable taking on projects or developing a new skill-set. I believe they have a lot of enthusiasm when it comes to stretching themselves.

How do you have fun at work (team building, pranks, etc..)?
We have a deliberately flat structure that ensures greater access to a broad range of team members, so people have a greater sense of belonging to a broader group. And because of this, we are pretty laid back in how we interact with each other, which creates a fun environment. We also do all the expected things such as social events, team building activities, networking, and a football match.

What are some of the challenges of your job?
Making sure I’ve always got one hand on Strategy and the other on Operations. In mid-size organisations it’s important to not only lead but also a steward at times. So maintaining focus is incredibly important.

The other thing that’s often challenging for mid-size organisations is getting your name out there and being seen as a true alternative to some of the more prominent organisations in our space. It’s easy for organisations to engage Professional Services of significant scale. Our challenge is to show people we need to be considered and that we can provide fantastic outcomes and great value.

What are some lessons learned from a past project that you can share with us?
There are times when you need to be directive, and that means as a leader whilst you want to provide a lot of freedom for your team to explore ways of working or how they are going to deliver a piece of work, there are times when for want of a better phrase “a captains call” needs to be made.
And honestly this is part of the reason you take on the role of CEO, you must back yourself as often as you back the team.

What advice would you give to someone who is starting in your industry?
Know what you are good at. I mean this in terms of your own skill-set and the services you can provide. If you stretch yourself too thin or try to offer too many things you will dilute your offering at both a personal/professional level and for the company that you are leading. That doesn’t mean you can’t expand your services over time. But mastery is something to be pursued.

Thank you for taking our pop quiz today. You get an A+ for effort. You can learn more about our interviewee and their business by visiting them on the web:
Twitter: @NatashaNorton73
Twitter: @Accuteque

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