Senior Project Manager
Melon provided me with valuable trainings and supported me along my journey.
Lily joined Melon in 2006 as a .NET developer. In 2014, when she had already become a SharePoint Team Lead, she was the first team-mate we introduced to you on our website. Fast forward to 2021, she is a Senior Project Manager. We talked to Lily once again to learn what has changed these past 7 years and how she has been thriving at Melon.
Hi Lily, this is your fifteenth year at Melon. Seven years ago, we interviewed you for the first time. What has changed since then?
A lot and at the same time a lot is still the same. Melon has grown to 300 people and opened new offices in 3 countries. However, it still feels like one big family, which is great. We are also working on bigger and more interesting software development projects. Professionally, I have become a Project Manager.
What helped you with the transition from Team Lead to Project Manager?
The transition happened organically for me. The main difference between the two positions is that the team lead role requires much more technical skills, while the managerial one – a whole lot of soft skills. Surprisingly, with strong motivation, enough time, and training, even developers can become successful managers. Melon provided me with valuable trainings and supported me along my journey.
What did Melon teach you?
To be kinder and more considerate when I interact with others because I am more of a straight-to-the-point person. I learned to be more patient with both my co-workers and our clients. I don’t get angry anymore when they don’t understand me right from the beginning. Now I can explain something more than 5 times in different ways, if needed. I can now walk in other people's shoes. This took me years. Also, I learned to say “no” when I can’t or have no time to do something.
What is the thing you love the most about your job, the one that made you stay at Melon for so many years?
Developers, developers, developers! Okay, and the management also. The team spirit is always great, everything else changes – projects, clients, technologies. But the ways the teams work together and the management treats the people keep me here.
Tell us more about your work with the management.
I have been closely working with one person from the management since the very beginning 15 years ago. He gives me autonomy and is easy-going.
Which is your favorite project so far?
The current one. Right now, we are building a financial system for Philips. It is a long-term project and I like it because it is relatively complex and is constantly changing. No way to get bored. We are following the client’s dynamics and it is a rollercoaster.
Which was the most challenging one?
Five years ago, we did a car service chain project. The technology was new to me, the team I worked with was new too, and pretty big. We all counted up to 15 people at the busiest time and had to be ready in 3-4 months. I was in deep waters, but quickly learned to swim. And swim fast!
Do you prefer working in a small or big team?
I love working in big teams. Big team means big, complex project. This is what I enjoy the most. This is when I learn the most. I am good at coordinating people and motivating them to make things happen. The bigger the challenge, the more accomplished I feel.
In your previous interview, you said that you are proud because of the team you have built. Is this the thing you are the proudest of?
I am at least twice prouder than before since I am part of two teams now. My colleagues make me proud with each professional milestone we conquer. On a personal note – I have two kids that make me pretty proud too. Overall, it seems I am quite a proud person (laughs).
Do you consider yourself a motivator?
“Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day, teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime” – this is the quote I would like to stick with. Motivation is the strongest when it comes from within the person. If I can help spark this self-motivation, I have completed my goal.
Teach us a lesson.
Be focused and give your best. After that close your laptop, have a drink, and enjoy life. Work never ends but after all, tomorrow is another day.