A few months ago I attended the Boston Startup Expo & Tech Job Fair on behalf of CC aiming not only to become more involved in the community, but also to discover intriguing and talented individuals who would thrive at CC. I had one conversation in particular with a woman two-years-removed from MIT, about what CC is like behind the scenes. After my previous blog about CC’s inner workings was so well-received, and because I knew all of my avid readers (hi mom!) were waiting with bated breath for my next entry, I had the great idea to share this conversation with the masses.
This chat with “Jane” went something like this: She informed me that in the two years since graduation she has found that she really enjoys program management. But, she, being an MIT alum, also wants to remain technical. She has found that at most companies she would have to choose between the two paths; take the PM route and manage people, or choose the technical road and miss out on that management experience.
At this point a smile crept across my face, as this conversation again reminded me why this last year has been a blast. I warned her that while I didn’t want to come across as a salesman, at CC this conundrum that she had described doesn’t exist. Instead of being forced to choose between technical problem-solving and effective management, you can do both…at the same time! You do not have to fear that you will be pigeon-holed or left feeling unsatisfied.
So, how is this possible? Well, allow me to delve into our project structure. For each project at CC there are three major roles: Project Reviewer (PR), Project Manager (PM), and Technical Authority (TA). Each role has a unique set of responsibilities, and the sum of the three creates a system of checks and balances.
The PR, often the business developer who was the first point of contact with the client, serves as an internal client representative, reviewing the project and dealing with any contractual issues.
The PM runs the project, with overall responsibility for budget and timescales. She ensures that the team is being utilized efficiently and effectively to deliver the project.
Finally, the TA is responsible for the technical solution and providing guidance to the team. He often works closely with the client’s technical team to relay their vision to the CC team.
Each role is filled by an individual who not only has the skills and experience to serve these functions, but also has the desire to operate in that role. And I think that’s one of the most important points, because at CC, unlike at many other companies, employees aren’t told what role they serve. Instead they are asked whether the role in question is something they’d be interested in. What a novel approach!
These three aforementioned roles together form a team that steers the project and delivers for the client. What caught my attention from day one, and for which Jane agreed sounded amazingly refreshing, is that an individual can serve as TA on one project, PM another, all while participating as a member of the technical team on a third. This is obviously dependent on the size of the project, the person’s experience level, and the individual’s project load, but can allow for him/her to be managerial and technical at the same time, something that cannot be found at most companies.
At this point Jane was so smitten with what CC has to offer that she promised to shovel out my car after every snowstorm if I’d pass along her resume (not really, but a guy can dream). Even if there was no declaration of free snow removal, she did seem intrigued, and understandably so. This project structure, coupled with challenging problems, and incredibly helpful and devoted coworkers (among a myriad of other positives that I could go on listing for pages) make CC an incredible environment for an engineer who wants to make ingenious products and have fun doing so.
If this type of environment sounds up your alley, head over to our careers page to see the current opportunities available.