Imagine that you’re a consultant at P5COM. What does that mean? What does your day look like? Qurien Brouwer explains. He is 25 years old – no children – and has been a consultant at P5COM for 3.5 years now. Today he’s working on a maternity care project.
6 a.m. – the alarm clock goes off
I hop in the shower and ask myself: What should I wear? Today I’ll be shadowing the staff in the planning department, but I’ll also be meeting the director. Right, casual smart rather than the usual suit. While having my coffee, I go through my notes for today once more. What’s the director’s name again, what exactly is the situation at this maternity care institution, and what is today’s objective? Next: into the car and off to the client.
7.30 a.m. – at the planning department
I ring at the door of an office in the middle of a residential area and meet the planners. First some coffee and small talk, and then the shift starts. The first families with new arrivals call: ‘Can you send someone round?’ The planners look for a suitable midwife as soon as possible and organize the care. I map out the planning process with markers and large sheets of paper. What are the potential best practices? What are the problem areas? And just as important: I pick up loads of jargon in these four and a half hours. Parturition and Braxton Hicks contractions no longer hold any secrets for me.
12 midday – meeting the director
The director gives me a warm welcome at her office. We soon discover that we’re both from Rotterdam. Which means rolling up our sleeves and getting down to work – just the thing for this project. We roughly discuss the entire project and have a look at the first findings from this morning.
1 p.m. – lunch
My college and I walk to the nearest supermarket for sandwiches and something to drink. On the way, we go back over the P5COM training day from last Friday. Exercise and sales training: a winning combination!
1.30 p.m. – working group
This afternoon, one of the working groups starts in the client’s organization. I go over the details of our presentation and approach again with my colleague. Yes, the working group itself is on track. We discuss the details, confer briefly, and work up a rough outline with the employees for the brown paper meeting where the processes are to be mapped out.
4 p.m. – develop the result
I look for a quiet hot desk and work out the morning on the shop floor and working group in further detail while they are still fresh in my memory. I email the list with actions and decisions and write out the process from this morning again – this time the final version.
5.30 p.m. – back home
I close the door behind me and leave for home. In the car, the operations manager calls to ask how the first day went. The answer is simple: it was a great, effective day – one that produced more questions than answers. But we are lucky: the project still has three months to go.