Ein-des-ein Team Interviews: Meet Yehor Skliarenko
Today we are starting a series of articles dedicated to our smart, inspiring, and talented ein-des-ein (or EDE) family! We love that behind all the monitors and emails there are vibrant personalities. Meet Yehor Skliarenko, our Project Manager, the soul of our ein-des-ein office in Dnipro.
Please tell us about yourself. What is your position at the company?
I have been working as a Project Manager for 2 years. I am the person who is in constant communication with the client. I am practically the face of the company. (smiles) Usually my work consists of elements of communication, planning, and reviewing any project related documentation.
How did you decide to become a project manager?
Previously I worked in the department of educational projects for a big agency. In fact, it was a big long-term project with a 1-year life cycle starting over and over again. After 5 years of interesting social work, I felt that it was no longer enough for me. I decided to join a young and rapidly developing company. I knew Michael (note: Michael Chepurniak, CEO of ein-des-ein) well so we could talk frankly about my goals.
I had a great desire to learn new things and lead interesting projects. Michael told me, “You know, it’s so easy! It’s like taking a bike ride through the forest. The bike is on fire. And the forest is on fire. But you keep going!”. This joke seemed too real for me for the first three months of work: I had been spending days and nights reading about SCRUM, Agile, team management. When I got my first projects with ein-des-ein, I was learning from my own mistakes. Now I have got a lot of experience and knowledge.
What does your typical work day at the EDE office look like?
Oh, we don’t have typical days, there is always something interesting happening here at ein-des-ein! (smiles)
You jump into the call, then replace another manager at a meeting, then you take part in the brainstorming process with a designer, etc., etc., etc.
Usually my day starts with e-mails and schedule check, then I have daily meetings with the teams. I communicate with clients, designers and developers. I also prepare reports, decompose tasks, hold meetings and review finished parts of applications/websites/platforms before demos with our customers. Of course, spending coffee breaks with colleagues is a good part of my day. (smiles) I also like to go out for a coffee to clear my mind after the morning briefings.
What do you like the most about your job?
I like the beginning of the project the most. It is very interesting to plan the result. The final part of the project is also fascinating: satisfied customers and a functioning application or website/platform make me happy. I see the results of my team’s hard work and how my teammates grow from project to project.
What’s your ideal project?
This is such an interesting question. (smiles) Perfect projects do not exist but let’s imagine. The ideal project is when things go smoothly, the technical challenges are new and interesting for the team, and there is a good budget, of course. In an ideal project there is an ideal customer for sure: they know what they want, their brief is perfect, they are ready for unusual and fresh decisions!
What was the most challenging project so far?
I remember my first large-scale project at ein-des-ein—the huge French outdoor advertising monitoring platform. The functionality looked like it was for the NASA mission control center: advertising videos in sync with the weather, relevant viewers analysis, import from social networks, integration with news feeds and channels… Quite a challenge!
The first month was very difficult, we worked on UX and UI, there were a lot of features, test mockups in French. We constantly got in touch with customers, discussed each screen and feature, added new ones during the discussion, adjusted the deadlines. I was very grateful to the design team who fearlessly explored all aspects of the platform, came up with user-friendly ideas, simplified flows and transitions.
Then we started the front-end development. We were in touch with the company’s technical department (responsible for the back-end development part) all the time so it was a successful exchange of experience.
If the project is not adhering to schedule, how do you get it back on track?
Time frames often change and there are a lot of reasons for it (both from our and client sides). We usually discuss all deadline changes, in addition, there is always a force majeure clause in contracts, nobody is immune from this. For example, if the responsible specialist is OOO (out of the office) due to health reasons, we don’t stop the working process and delegate the tasks to the remaining specialists. If we bump into some technical issues, we can discuss the deadline changes with the client or decide to move forward without the feature not to waste the precious time, so we can get back to it later.
What’s something you don’t want us to know? Now is the time to spill the beans!
Everyone’s got a secret, especially PMs. (laughs) When a manager tells you “I need to discuss it with the team”, it means you have stumped him with your question. He doesn’t want to take on the responsibility of promising to do something or simply isn’t ready for this question. These are the little tricks. (smiles) But we still honor the “Code” and our clients so I always get back with answers as soon as I can!
How do you like to spend your spare time? Recommend your top movies/books/tv shows.
I am a big fan of art. I like oil painting so I try practicing at home. There are “lazy days” when I simply rest at home and watch my favorite movies like the old 007 with Sean Connery. I spend winter evenings with a cup of cocoa and a good book. Right now I am re-reading The Lord of the Rings in English to widen my vocabulary.
Your 2021 resolution is…
Only moving forward! I see great opportunities for the company this year and we will make the most of them together!
Can you share some advice for those who aspire to become a Project Manager?
For all the young readers who are thinking of becoming a Project Manager: please take a minute to think if you really want it. What is your real motivation? My genuine aspiration was the force to always push me forward.
You need to start with the courses for young PMs to learn the basics and then add books, articles, webinars on related topics. Sutherland’s SCRUM, Agile Manifesto, 45 Manager Tattoos should become your reference books. Read about technical aspects of your work, regularly communicate with developers to understand the details. And don’t forget about soft skills: psychology, teamwork, conflict management books are also important.
You can see more of our office life on our Instagram account. We love to post about our work and our everyday moods and inspiration.
If you’d like the ein-des-ein team to handle your project, reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or simply fill out the form on our website and we’ll contact you as soon as possible.