Confessions of a Consultant with Gorica Mitrovic
It’s no secret that Engage Squared specialises in creating <people> friendly technology, so we are continuing the theme of sharing our insights and learnings and diving into our own <people>. For this three-part blog series, we interview three (amazing) consultants and reveal the key pitfalls they see clients falling into and tips to avoid said pitfalls.
When it came to who to interview, we chose senior consultants working in different disciplines to give a holistic view on the types of consultants at Engage Squared. We landed on Senior Office 365 Consultant, Gorica Mitrovic, Senior Change Consultant, Emily McPherson and Digital Workplace and Employee Practice Lead, Rachel Harnott. The fact that they are all women was a bonus!
This month we start with the recently promoted Gorica, who is adored internally and externally. Our clients love working with her and if you search Gorica in our Yammer she is constantly being praised for helping anyone who asks and the success of her projects.
Who are you and what do you do?
I’m Gorica Mitrovic and I am a Senior Microsoft 365 Consultant.
I joined Engage Squared in 2018 after 7 years working for different enterprises. I started my career at a professional services firm, before moving to a tech product company, followed by an agribusiness and an automotive company.
What do you enjoy about your role?
I enjoy how diverse and fulfilling my role is as every day is filled with new learnings and challenges. My typical workday could include working on an intranet implementation project for a client, leading a technical workshop and helping with implementation of a Teams app – all for different clients.
The best part of my role is educating and enabling people how to get best out of the technology and making the technology to work for them.
Do you come across common pitfalls in projects?
Absolutely! Let me share the top pitfalls I see…
1. Scope creep. Due to new requirements being identified during discovery workshops where stakeholders from different business areas are involved or change in client’s needs as they better understand features available to them.
2. The disconnect between the client’s project team and their technology department. I come across many instances where a project is not endorsed or fully understood by the client’s technology department and as a result, we are faced with challenges implementing the solution.
3. Unclear roles and responsibilities when project team roles are not clearly defined at the beginning which can cause challenges with signing off deliverables, tasks not completed on time.
4. Unrealistic targets and deadlines due to the importance of the project on client’s end.
What makes a project successful?
I would say open and transparent communication and working in partnership with the client on achieving the agreed project success.
At the beginning of a project, it is key to establish agreed ways of working with the client. At Engage Squared, we prefer ‘working out loud’ using Microsoft Teams channels so that everyone in the project team is across activities that are underway and any challenges we may have. It is a shift in mindset moving from private chats to public channels, but we found this way of working is highly effective and we are fortunate that most of our clients are happy to embrace it.
How do you know define success?
I’d say looking from the client’s perspective, success is defined looking at the impact, usage and adoption metrics of the delivered solution and the feedback the client receives from their users.
From the project perspective, I’d say the success is defined by how well we worked as a team, the feedback client provides in the project survey, how likely the client is to use our services in the future and if they go ahead with our support services.
Success is also defined by how much support is required during the warranty period. Most projects have a warranty period which usually starts after user acceptance testing is completed. If the number of warranty requests is low, it means that we have done well from a technical perspective.
Have you seen any big updates within your industry?
For instance, there have been significant updates in SharePoint space in the last few years. From a platform that was not user friendly and difficult to create and manage content to the latest SharePoint Online version which is an intuitive platform that empowers everyone to create and manage their own content with a minimum training.
What does an ideal project team look like for you?
An ideal project team should consist of individuals with diverse skillsets and expertise who have clearly defined roles and responsibilities and are committed towards a single goal which is defined in the project success criteria.
It is essential for project team members to build rapport and professional relationships quickly to make a positive project atmosphere.
Thanks for the interview, Gorica!
If you enjoyed our interview with Gorica and are interested in the types of projects she has managed, take a look at our Sigma Healthcare case study.
Check in next month for our interview with Senior Change Consultant, Emily McPherson.