Thursday, May 5, 2011

Off to Winston!

I got a call out of the blue yesterday morning saying that I was going to be put on a project at Wake Forest in Winston Salem, NC. It was quite unexpected as I thought I would be starting another project. This is the first time in almost 4 years of consulting that I have gotten a project in NC.

It's going to be fun because one of my closest friends from high school lives in Winston Salem. We chatted on the phone last night and will try to meet up for dinner at least once a week. Winston Salem is also only about an hour drive from Chapel Hill. So I have actually arranged to fly from Chicago into Raleigh Durham this Sunday, spend Sunday night, Mother's Day, at my parent's house and drive into Winston on Monday morning.

I will then be driving back to Chapel Hill on Thursday evening to spend the weekend until I drive back to Winston on the following Monday. It worked out nicely because my sister is also home next weekend for a friend's wedding. And I won't fly back to Chicago until May 19.

This is going to be an interesting project because I do not have the technical expertise that the other team members do. My role is really to manage this project as a project manager, and help them make sure that everything is on task. But as it is with any other project, there will be quite a bit of orientation in the beginning.

Orientation not only to the project, but to your coworkers and the client, along with all the little things like how to get around.... where the good restaurants are by your project or hotel... where to find good coffee. All the things you have to learn and get acclimated to when you start a new job, we have to do it for every new engagement.

It's interesting because I've really learned to be comfortable with change and uncertainty and not knowing anything. I've learned to relish the steep learning curve of a new project and client even when that comes with some stress. It's why I continue to be a consultant I guess.

Am I still looking for another job though? Yes. My coach is leaving for a firm that I am really really interested in. But the job would require relocation to Seattle. The prospect is exciting yet scary at the same time. So I think I might give her a couple weeks to learn the ropes at this new firm, and let me know how she likes it. Then perhaps I will apply.

But I also got a call mid week this week from some past colleagues who are at another consulting firm. They talked about how they really wanted to bring me on board, yet they can't do it just yet. They have to sell a couple more projects before they can justify bringing me on board. But the call was to tell me that they were interested and that I should not accept any other offers without talking to them first.

I then still have two other past colleagues at two other firms who also have my resumes and are working on things for me on the inside. So that's 4 past colleagues at 4 separate firms. When I started as a healthcare consultant, I often heard that the world of healthcare consulting is quite small. I don't think I quite realized how small until now.

I'm really curious how things are going to end up...

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