The finalists for WashingtonExec’s 2023 Pinnacle Awards were announced Sept. 25, and we’ll be highlighting some of them until the event takes place live, in-person Nov. 16.

Next is Nathan Magestad, senior vice president of federal engineered systems and business development lead at Parsons Corp., and finalist in the Business Development Executive of the Year, Public Company category. Here, he shares proud organizational moments and career advice.

What are you most proud of having been a part of in your current organization? 

Having been with Parsons for over 17 years, I am fortunate to have had many different roles, but my current one has been the most challenging yet rewarding. I am responsible for leading the strategy, growth, and business development of a Parsons federal business unit that designs, builds, and delivers large, complex solutions in the most challenging locations. We protect critical infrastructure and people in support of our federal customers’ critical missions for a healthier, sustainable, and secure world.

Two years ago, I inherited a team that needed some support, investment, and vision. In a very short period, we have increased the team by over 380%, increased our growth by over 200%, and have alignment through the organization on our focused strategy.

Winning is contagious and I am so proud of our team and the recent accomplishments we have made highlighted with winning at over an 80%-win rate so far in 2023.

What’s your best career advice for those who want to follow in your footsteps? 

Own your career. The only thing that everyone in our industry has in common is lack of time in a day, so it is especially important that you spend time working on your own personal gaps to get where you want to be. Three things have helped me advance rapidly through my career:

Be Present and Dependable. Follow-up even if it is not required and be present when working through the issues. Even with today’s telework and video conferencing, do not multitask ⏤ be present in the meetings. Take the actions that no one wants and follow-up until they are done.

Find a mentor. It is always good to have a sounding board who you trust that is not in your organizational chain. Obtaining sound, uncompromised advice allows you to make more calculated decisions.

Take risks. Trust yourself, and most importantly, if the CEO asks you do something ⏤ just do it and make sure you do it well.

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