During the last several years of my career, I have played a series of internal operations roles. This was a nice change after so many years being a client-facing consultant.
You have a different view of constraints when you come out of a client-delivery context.
Client constraints help you focus. In the backstage world, there are less boundaries to keep you corralled: as a result, you can spend too much on supplies or take too long planning. It’s important to remember to deliver.
Then there’s ego. You don’t get the glory. Sales get glory. New deals in the pipeline get glory. You don’t get glory for streamlining messaging, no matter how it goes.
Many internal employees like things to stay the same. I am spoiled. Being a traveling consultant for so many years, I learned to get bored if I’m not looking to improve my work.
I always loved working with customers. Still do. The only downside of consulting was not being around long enough to understand how your work would survive without you. Now I can get the best of both worlds.
I’m finding it refreshing to bring a client delivery mentality to an in-house role these days. I’m also lucky to have a team that is sinking their teeth into a more agile style of working.
Love what you do. Find something you can improve tomorrow. Make it better. Keep going.
Also published on Medium.