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SPARK OF THE CORPORATE

George D Schindler is the President and Chief Executive Officer of CGI Group. CGI Group Inc is the fifth largest independent information technology and business process services firm in the world. He is also the member of Board of directors of CGI. He was a lifer at American Management Systems, Inc (AMS) where he held various North America-based management and consulting positions. and was moved to CGI when CGI purchased AMS. He has been working with CGI since 2004. He has spent almost all of his career around federal government marketplace. A well-regarded, visible leader of the industry, he has, in his career marked by continuous achievement, a treasure of more than three decades of experience in technological development, communications and consulting services and has managed large operations in Information Technology and management consulting. Identifying him as a strong candidate for the role of CEO, he has progressively assumed more responsibility, from U.S. business to North American operations and then to global operations.

An executive sponsor for CGI’s Dream Connectors program, which connects the talents of the firm’s professionals with the needs of the more than 400 communities where they live and work every day, George D Schindler maintains a close relationship with the community. An industry veteran, he has won numerous awards for his contributions and the company has been chosen for many awards under his leadership. He has also been named among the 49 most highly compensated channel CEOs in 2016 by CRN.

Early career...

With a degree in computer science, George D Schindler started his career at American Management Systems as a young grad. Initially in the Federal Civilian business, he later moved to the Financial Service sector of AMS. At the time of acquisition by Canada’s biggest tech company, CGI, Schindler was the Vice President at AMS. He has been in many management and consulting positions in both the government and commercial sector business groups. Upon CGI purchasing AMS, he was asked to take on a significantly bigger role heading up a business unit in a new geography.

Moving to CGI...

Schindler joined CGI in 2004 following the acquisition of American Management Systems Inc. After spending two decades in and around the federal government marketplace, he stepped away to manage the business units of AMS for CGI in New York City’s financial district for two years after the acquisition, where he was responsible for the financial services solutions in the Greater New York Region. He ran CGI’s banking and financial services practice. After two years, he was asked to return to Washington as President of CGI Federal, a wholly-owned U.S. operating subsidiary of CGI Group Inc. The move was a very exciting one for Schindler.

From 2006 to 2011, he headed CGI Federal where he led a team of over 11,000 professionals with the Civilian, Defense and Intelligence Sectors of the U.S. government. By 2010, the company's growth doubled through organic means, and the acquisition of Stanley, Inc., tripled it. It was under his leadership that the company was named as the Greater Washington Government Contractor of the Year by the Fairfax County Chamber of Commerce, PSC and Washington Technology. He integrated $1 billion acquisition and upscaled the overall U.S business. Schindler ran the company's U.S. business from 2011. From 2014 onwards, he served as President and Chief Operating Officer and led the company’s global operations. As senior vice president, he managed CGI’s operations in the greater New York area. He was also the U.S. lead of the Banking and Investments Industry Group, CGI’s largest vertical.

At the helm of Canada’s biggest IT company...

The long association with the company has helped Schindler gain an intimate knowledge of the culture and operations of the company and deep credibility within the organization, which supported him with leading the global operations of the company. Schindler has played an instrumental role in the development and execution of information technology and business process services firm's global strategy as a member of the Management Committee.

In October 2016, George Schindler was promoted as the third CEO in CGI's 40-year history, succeeding Michael E. Roach. The Montreal based Canadian company went through a $42.7 million restructuring program expanding its business mostly through acquisitions, post his appointment. In October 2017, CGI acquired Affecto Plc, a leading provider of business intelligence and enterprise information management solutions and services, adding more than 1,000 highly skilled professionals to complement CGI's deep expertise in data intensive technologies. The company acquired Boston-based Collaborative Consulting, Alabama-based software consulting firm CTS and Colorado based ECS Team in 2016. A recognized industry leader, Schindler is expecting to continue to grow CGI for years to come, and one that is clearly generating opportunities to both build and buy. Schindler and his team provides end to end Information Technology and business process services to clients worldwide from offices and centers of excellence in the United States, Canada, Europe and Asia Pacific. The company provides a range of support services for military operations areas of operational planning, training, modelling and simulation, flight operations, mobilization planning and execution, deployment operations, force protection program, and transformation.

Personal life...

George Schindler holds a Bachelor of Science degree in computer science from Purdue University, Indiana. Raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, he is a big Penguins and Steelers fan. He actively speaks and writes about the topics related to technology and business strategy. The Next Level by his personal coach, Scott Eblin is his favourite book. Schindler supports gender diversity and equality and is actively involved in the #WeNeedBoth group. Once CGI won ObamaCare website contract, Schindler became an Obama 2012 campaign donor.

When he was given a bigger role heading up a business unit, he turned to executive coach to help uncover his strengths and weaknesses and to sharpen his leadership skills. After the first meeting, he spent a couple weeks going over toying about its value. He made use of it as an opportunity to create a higher performing team. He was open to feedback and was willing to create positive change. It prepared him to take more challenging positions in his career journey and put him on the right path for his personal as well as business growth.

Leadership style...

A relationship builder, Schindler is a leader who leads by example. His style is “first among peers.” He models the kind of behaviour that he expects from his executive team. A very inclusive and collaborative leader, he expects the same to be followed throughout the organization. He addresses his employees as members as he considers all of them as owners of the organisation.

Associations and memberships...

Member of IT advisory board at George Mason University
Chaired the 27th Annual Women’s Leadership Conference in 2013
Vice-Chair of the Public Sector Division of the TechAmerica Board (The Technology Association of America)
Member of Boards of Directors for the Professional Services Council (PSC)
Member of Boards of Directors for the Northern Virginia Technology Council
Member of Boards of Directors for The Catalogue for Philanthropy—Greater Washington
A Trustee for the Committee for Economic Development

Awards and accolades...

Named among Canada's Most Powerful Business People 2017
Named among top 100 leaders twice by Federal Computer Week– in 2010 and 2013
Named among Federal Computer Week’s top 100 federal leaders
Named among Executive Biz’s “Top 20 People to Watch”

Quotes

Keep working, keep learning, and keep changing. How these play out is what makes the bigger story.
If you are taking executive coaching, first, you have to be in sync with the coach. There has to be trust. Then both parties need to call each other out when something is going a little off track for either party.

Hope readers caught up the spark...

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