In November 2016, a friend of mine was lamenting a difficult project she was working on and needed some advice from a project management and healthcare perspective. I drew out this diagram for her and it led to me meeting the rest of the team a few days later:
Fast, Good, Cheap – you can pick two!
OLIVER is a dynamic creative digital agency based in London with a wide range of clients including AB InBev, 3M, and Unilever. They had a project that was particularly complicated and a client with extremely high standards on https://www.keepitpumping.com/ – an advice and guidance website for heart failure patients and their carers. The only problem was that nobody in the company had a background in compliance and governance and the account director at the time was more creative than project management focused. I was asked to help stabilise the account and negotiate a scope of work for 2017 with a new account director for an “account reset” with a subsidiary of the OLIVER Group: Dare Agency.
The main client contact and I didn’t always agree on everything but we had a great working relationship. I didn’t realise it was unusual for project managers to take on a lot of client facing work, but the client respected my honesty and openness with her about how we could get the best out of the budget. The account director was able to step back to focus on other billable work, while I stepped up to manage the account handling as well as project management full time. Since then, the OLIVER Group has opened up a Healthcare Division, so I am currently in the process of handing over a now-stable account to them, who will be able to pick up the baton and shape the scope of work to suit their talents.
This has been a steep learning curve for me in a new industry but I have absolutely loved working with designers, copywriters, UX teams and especially content strategists. While I loved working in public health, seeing the ways that creativity and imagination can be applied to help patients achieve positive outcomes during a stressful diagnosis was really inspiring. It is such a lovely project and I’m really glad we were able to wrangle the many complicated needs of the account to keep it in the OLIVER Group.
- Service transformation, account reset and strategic digital oversight of keepitpumping.com, owned by Novartis Pharmaceuticals
- Negotiating the client retainer of £600k and 2017 scope of work with competition from 2 external partner agencies
- Client facing project management of a complex programme with multiple stakeholder dependencies
- Managing a digital team including developers, artworkers, designers, copywriters and content strategists
- Stabilising the account so it is ready to be handed over to the OLIVER Healthcare team
Another freelancer project from March-October 2016. Club Soda is a small startup of 3 directors and 2-4 staff with an annual turnover of around £70k. I was brought in to help build an online guide to pubs and bars for mindful drinkers in partnership with Blenheim CDP charity. The startup is led by visionaries Laura and Jussi, who use behavioural science to help motivate people to cut down on their drinking. It’s a bit like Weight Watchers but for alcohol and I was immediately drawn to the project as someone who runs events in pubs!
They had an idea to create an app for their followers to showcase pubs in London that served a really good selection of non-alcoholic drinks. Something like 40% of adults in Hackney choose not to drink alcohol at all, but people still want to socialise. The result is https://clubsodaguide.com/
Working with Blenheim CDP charity, local businesses and councils and the general public, we drew up user journeys, wireframes and a questionnaire for pubgoers and landlords alike. We were thrilled to get so much interest from people and several months later, I am so excited at how the project is going from strength to strength.
- Creating an online local pub guide from conception to launch for a Hackney based social enterprise
- Recruiting and managing the web team (web designer and two developers)
- Initiated and embedded Agile Scrum events and Kanban to streamline processes
- Working closely with a behavioural economist to design a responsive UX
- Managing the expectations of various stakeholders: funding charities, company membership, local business owners, Hackney Council and the City of London Corporation
- Research and writing comms, branding and marketing for the guide as well as content to go on it
- Fundraising an additional £80k from local and national health and wellbeing funds and the City of London Corporation
Freelance consultant role at an education startup team of 6, specialising in personal training courses for adults.
Originally recommended by a friend to help out with some admin, I noticed that there were a few basic processes that could be a bit more efficient. I started out by putting together an office manual to address the dozens of small admin tasks that seemed to stress everyone out. Really simple things from useful contact numbers and post office details to “how to register a new student” and “sending out a starter pack”. None of these had ever been written down before so just having a straightforward checklist took some of the mental strain out of everyday tasks and freed people up to focus on strategy, sales and supporting the tutors.
Once that had been established, the office manager and I set up weekly team meetings where we all talked about things we’d achieved, some challenges we’d come up against and any help that we could offer each other as a group. It was great for building up the team and also helped to motivate people with a sense of healthy competition. Great company to work with, I’m sure they’ll go far!
- Designed, led and delivered a comprehensive online data management system for keeping track of student enrolment numbers, profits and attendance
- Created a detailed business policy to ensure consistent ways of managing day to day processes
- Delivered measurable improvements in customer engagement and retention
Managing several projects to solve key issues across London concerning information governance: information sharing, data security, obtaining and recording consent, dealing with sensitive patient and staff information, training and development.
I worked closely with different types of organisations providing healthcare including the NHS, local councils and private companies. Working together across these organisational boundaries for the first time, they were able to immediately see the benefits of sharing best practices and encouraging other colleagues to do the same. This was an exciting project to be involved in and clearly demonstrated the merits of collaborative engagement when it comes to solving complex social issues.
Working as part of a dynamic team supporting the five main hospitals in south east London – University Hospital Lewisham, Greenwich Hospital, Princess Royal Hospital, Guy’s and St Thomas – I coordinated the Director’s On Call Rota to ensure senior management cover at all times, as well as facilitating regular discussions between the hospitals for resource allocation during regional emergencies and other urgent pressures.
A fortnightly knitting group that I set up in January 2014. Links to Cricklewood Residents’ Association and other local groups. We can teach a range of knitting, crochet, and embroidery techniques for all levels of skill, from beginner right up to expert.
I will be chairing a panel discussion featuring three professional magicians – Laura London, Harry DeCruz and Marc Kerstein – at the Nine Worlds Conference in Heathrow on 10th August.
At The Summer House Weekend festival, I will be presenting some tried and tested methods for successfully identifying fakery, distortion and downright hogwash in modern media. From dodgy statistics to opinion presented as fact, I’ll be arming you with the basic tools you’ll need to make sure you don’t get fooled again.
A collection of useful articles related to project management, events and marketing.
Follow Carmina’s board Project management on Pinterest.
A short but ambitious project – pre-production for The Summer House Weekend festival 14-18th August. In the run-up to the festival, I have been assisting the festival chief with coordinating dancers, artists, therapists, engineers, and crew members to make this the best summer festival yet.