Introducing Jo Pettett, our Head of Project Delivery
We caught up with our new Head of Project Delivery, Jo Pettett, and talked to her about her career to date, her vision for the role, and what she'll bring to the business...
I have a real appreciation for understanding your own customers and what makes them tick and not assuming the truth for one is the same for another.
Jo Pettett, Head of Project Delivery
Describe your career path and how you got into project delivery?
I have come from a long and happy career in travel, where I started in service delivery. Initially, customer-facing and then later behind the scenes, where I designed and delivered overseas service propositions (and got to travel the world to deliver them – bliss). Listening to customers (directly and indirectly) and what they valued was key, and that ethos stayed with me as I moved into project management around 12 years ago.
The move came about from wanting to investigate and solve bigger and more deep-rooted issues that ultimately impacted the customer and our ability to serve them well.
Inevitably, the solutions became more and more digitally focused, and I started managing app and web projects more than anything else. I also spent some time heading up a product and eCommerce team, delivering large-scale initiatives alongside optimisation workstreams.
What is there from your background in the travel industry that you feel you can bring to your new role?
I was fortunate enough to work for many different travel brands across different holiday types, so I have a real appreciation for understanding your own customers and what makes them tick and not assuming the truth for one is the same for another.
The projects I have worked on cover everything from internal business process efficiencies to big scale web builds and many things in-between. I love nothing more than finding a problem to solve or an opportunity to be filled and then putting all the pieces together to make the change happen.
What do you think makes an excellent Head of Project Delivery?
I think this role needs to shape the frameworks and standards of project delivery across the agency while enabling the different personalities of the teams and their clients to shine through. I don’t believe there is one right way to run a project. Instead, we should be sharing great ideas and practices so we continually improve.
Tell us about your most challenging project?
Going back about eight years now, to an 18-month project to design, build and roll out a bespoke digital platform (an app) and hardware (iPads, chip and pins, voucher printers) and the user training.
This was for 500+ staff to carry out both their customer service and sales functions across eight countries with different financial and data regulations to consider. Oh, and it needed to work offline as well as online due to connectivity limitations in situ.
This was my first experience in the world of apps and product design - and what a way to start! It was a very successful project, and I learnt a great deal, but it was a steep learning curve!
What qualities do you think project managers need?
Organisational skills go without saying (I said it anyway), but there is so much more to what makes a strong Project Manager. Communication is key, as even the best laid out project won’t succeed if no one knows it and where they fit in.
They need to be comfortable with, in fact, thrive on, adapting to challenges and change. And they need to have authority (without becoming a dictator) and be able to adjust their conversation to suit everyone, from a junior technician to a company CEO.
What is the one most important thing you think a successful project needs to have?
A genuine desire for (and commitment to) collaboration is crucial to successful project outcomes in my experience. There can be no ‘them and us’ - everyone is in it together.
What do you feel you bring to Fresh Egg in order to help our customers?
I have focused on digital and eCommerce projects for the last eight years, with my project management hat on and then later as an eCommerce leader. This has given me a well-rounded outlook that will help me understand the client perspective and ensure our team give them the best value.
What are you looking forward to most about working at Fresh Egg?
So many things! Working with such super smart, highly skilled and passionate people is right up there. Fresh Egg has really great people, and they couldn’t have been more welcoming. I can see why the clients are so impressed.
What do your friends and family think you do for a job?
I just posed the question on my family WhatsApp group, and the answers ranged from “no idea” (thanks for listening, mum) to “managing creative projects and people”. My four-year-old thinks I am “on lots of calls spending money”, apparently!
Finally, what is your favourite way to eat an egg?
Tough one as eggs are literally my favourite food... I’ll go with 'over easy’ 😊