Home' Army Acquisition Logistics and Technology Magazine : Army ALT July-September 2016 Contents What do you do in your position, and why is it important to
the Army or the warfighter?
I am the director of program management for PEO EIS. e
Program Management Directorate covers a lot of ground: We
provide oversight and management for acquisition and busi-
ness processes for more than 35 program o ces. is includes
managing the budget process for a portfolio of more than $18
billion across the program objective memorandum period, and
supporting the manpower, congressional and public a airs and
audit missions across the PEO. Our work may seem slightly
removed from the war ghter, but we work every day to ensure
that the acquisition process remains on track, that funding and
people are in the right place at the right time and that we are
communicating our goals and e orts e ectively. All of this
directly contributes to ensuring that Soldiers receive the infor-
mation technology solutions that we have promised and keeps
the global Army connected.
How did you become part of the Army Acquisition Work-
force, and why?
When I took o the uniform, I went to work for the U.S. Army
Materiel Command, supporting the nance mission. After a
few years, I decided that I really wanted to be part of Army
acquisition, because the nance mission here is so di erent
than anywhere else. In acquisition, you have the opportunity to
have an impact directly on the Soldier. Results of decisions are
immediate, and you are in a position to try to x processes that
aren't working. By joining the Army Acquisition Corps, I knew
I could help get Soldiers what they needed. As we in PEO EIS
like to say, I'm truly in a position to support every Soldier, every
What do you see as the most important points in your career
with the Army Acquisition Workforce, and why?
For me, the most important points in my career have been the
"silent wins"---the things that I have done for people and for pro-
grams that have made them successful, but that not everyone
hears about---successfully nding funding solutions for pro-
grams through some really tough times, including a government
shutdown, sequestration and multiple continuing resolutions,
and helping them stay on track to meet their schedules and get
capabilities out to the eld. I think these are so critical because
they have helped our PEO EIS team to be successful for the
Soldier in the eld.
Can you name a particular mentor or mentors who helped
you in your career? How did they help you? Have you been
Jim Daniel, who retired as a colonel from the Air Force, became
a mentor early in my Army career and is someone I'm still in
touch with. He was a tremendous leader and treated everyone
with respect. At a time in my life when it seemed rank was the
only thing that mattered, he made a point to value every person's
contribution. He accepted di erent opinions and valued per-
spectives other than his own. When he told us to do something,
he took the time to explain why it was important. Whether you
agreed with it or not, you understood why. He truly encouraged
me to be better in everything, and I work hard to lead by his
example and mentor those around me.
What's the greatest satisfaction you have in being a part of the
Army Acquisition Workforce?
Going back to my earlier comment about silent wins---that is the
greatest satisfaction: to help our programs support the Soldier,
no matter how long it takes. Right up there with that, however,
is also seeing people on my team and the people I mentor being
successful. When our teams experience success or accomplish
goals they have set for themselves, I celebrate right along with
them. is is truly a team sport, and when we work together to
get capabilities elded or when someone gets into grad school or
gets a promotion, these wins and accomplishments collectively
make us stronger and better prepared for the next challenge.
What advice would you give to someone who aspires to a
career like yours?
Be real. Play to your strengths and not those that you think
others expect you to play to. Talent comes in many shapes and
sizes and there is more than one path to success, so staying true
to who you are and how you do things is so important. You can
achieve success, but unless you've done it as you, on terms that
you can accept, it won't be comfortable once you get there, and
reaching higher will be even harder. Most of your energy will be
going to keeping up the appearance that you have built, which is
maybe not the authentic you. So, while there is a lot of advice I
could dole out---and my team knows I don't usually hold back---
focus and being real are at the top of my list.
---MS. SUSAN L. FOLLETT
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