As any entrepreneur knows, it is not a choice, but when the vision grabs them, they are driven to execute it. As Elon Musk says, ‘building a business is like chewing on glass and staring down a dark abyss’. One really needs to have the passion for what he or she is doing or all the naysayers, long nights and challenges will defeat them. One such vision driven woman is Connie Mckeage who had a vision that she continues to passionately pursue, the need to change the dynamics in the financial services sector and lower the total cost of investing to clients. She had a way to get there and she was driven to do it. At the peak of success, she has an enviable track record of leading teams that deliver. Currently, she is Managing Director of the OneVue Group.
The Journey of Successful Trailbazer
Connie grew up on a dairy farm 45 minutes away from Montreal, Canada. Her family was travelling quite a bit with her father’s job. He used to design turbines for the dams, which put him in very remote areas and they didn’t want to take the children out of school, so Connie lived primarily with her grandparents. Her parents were very simple people, but incredibly modern in a lot of ways. They were farmers and worked from morning until night. There wasn’t much money to go around, but she just had this incredible freedom, which led her to being quite self-sufficient.
She eventually found her way to Melbourne as a foreign student to study commerce, which took her to her “accidental” job at Bankers Trust Australia, now BT Financial Group, marking the start of her career in Australian financial services in 1983. Almost four years later, she worked in Asia for Price Waterhouse Coopers (PWC) and later found a role that took her to the United States. While she was overseas, she was approached to help set up Etrade in Australia, which took her into the digital world. Connie found herself back at PWC, working in its corporate finance department, which subsequently introduced her to OneVue.
Discovering OneVue and Evolving the Digital Environment
Connie has been the CEO of OneVue for almost a decade now. While she is making her way to new heights, OneVue is evolving the way Australians manage their investments in a digital environment. The company provides wholesale services to the wealth management industry with a focus on superannuation. OneVue works with the client to offer a range of superannuation solutions, whatever their stage of life or superannuation balance. The team provides self managed super fund, retail supplier and digital member-based solutions. Through customized wealth management platforms, the team help clients with the ultimate end-to-end investment experience. While platform services have been the focus of OneVue and remains an important offering, the company also takes pride in the fact that it is now the market leader in independent outsourced unit registry solutions. The firm caters to advisers and accountants, retail and member organizations, fund managers, custodians and trustees.
Vast Experience and Appreciation in the Journey
Her extensive experience in the Australian, Asian, European and North American financial services markets solidly underpins her role as Managing Director. In her day to day role, Connie is responsible for overseeing the strategic direction of the company and delivering sustainable growth for the group.
Connie was awarded the Centenary Medal for her contribution to Australian business leadership in 2003. She is a Founder of Financial Executive Women (FEW) and in 2015 was an Eastern Finalist for E&Y’s Entrepreneur of the Year. For two consecutive years she’s also been named a finalist for the prestigious ‘Woman of the Year’ title at the Women in Financial Services Awards. Recently, Connie was named a finalist in The Australian Financial Review & Westpac’s 100 Women of Influence Awards.
Creating A Peaceful Life
Connie’s natural temperament is to go with the flow. While she is managing the firm, she is highly structured to ensure that she gets to all the things that are important to her including time with her husband, her granddaughter, friends, family and of course time to herself. She thinks that the most important thing to preserve is time for oneself as one cannot bring any value to other relationships if one doesn’t look after your own mental and physical well being.
When asked about her take on women’s contribution in business today, she said that she doesn’t differentiate gender and that successful business needs teamwork and not an individual gender contribution.
Connie thinks she is at the peak today because of the mistakes she has made along the way. She is in a wonderful place surrounded by people she likes working with where they support each other and are doing something to make a difference. She has no regrets, because that’s what made her what she is today.