This month’s Employee Spotlight features PSG Project Manager Colleen Joyce.
I joined the PSG team in the early part of 2011. Prior to that, I got my start at another educational development house, where I learned the ropes of copyediting, proofreading and project management. I then spent several years as managing partner of my own small publishing services company before settling in at PSG.
If I had to choose one word to describe myself, it would probably be perfectionist. This certainly comes in handy in the project management game. A typical workday for me begins with checking email to see what happened while I was away from my desk. As emails arrive throughout the day, I try to address them right away. I like a neat and tidy inbox and don’t like to leave correspondents waiting for a reply. These emails generally include queries from clients, deliveries from freelancers and the occasional update from home about my beautiful one-year-old daughter, Kat.
I have managed dozens of projects at PSG, including SBAC math assessment items for elementary through high school, a high-school economics textbook and state-specific science assessment items; I’ve even managed a project containing test items to be used in Qatar. My favorite projects are ELA and social studies. I find them to be creative, fun, and complex—and I get to put that history major and English minor I earned to some use.
In addition to working as a project manager, I am not afraid to don my copyeditor and proofreader hats every now and then to help out with quality control and proofreading. And I always do a spot check review of any deliverables before they go to clients. After all, as stated previously, I’m a perfectionist and couldn’t bear to let things leave my hands without at least a quick look.
Depending on the season, outside of office hours you can find me rooting for the Pats, Sox, Celtics, Bruins and UMass basketball team. I am a huge sports fan (Good thing I live near Boston, where we have all the best professional teams!) and am known around the office for always being on top of the latest sports news—thanks in part to my semi-obsessive attention to local sports radio. In addition to sports, I am also a self-taught dog expert, which is not surprising, since I have three terribly high-maintenance dogs: a black Lab, a yellow Lab and a Lab/pit bull/greyhound mix. They did rule the roost until my daughter came onto the scene and promptly took over. But they have taken it in stride, enjoying all the new “dog” toys that are now strewn around the house.
Like many in publishing, I am an avid reader. My guilty pleasure is epic fantasy—something that was a bit of an embarrassment until Peter Jackson/J. R. R. Tolkien and HBO/George R. R. Martin recently made it supercool. (I like to think of myself as ahead of the curve.) If stranded on an island and only allowed three books, I would have to insist on six and take Yann Martel’s Life of Pi, Stephen King’s The Dark Tower series, Gregory David Roberts’s Shantaram, Willa Cather’s My Ántonia, the aforementioned Martin’s Song of Ice and Fire series, and David Wroblewski’s The Story of Edgar Sawtelle. And if you want to make an argument that book series constitute more than one book, then I assure you, you will not be invited to hang with me on my island.
Little-Known Facts About Colleen:
Colleen has been an annual attendee of the Newport Folk Festival in Newport, Rhode Island, since 1996 and has basked in the presence of folk legends such as Bob Dylan, Pete Seeger, John Prine and Emmylou Harris. But the real treat for her is in discovering new talent, like Australian folk band The Waifs and Nashville-based Old Crow Medicine Show. Like reading, music fuels Colleen, and she brings that same passion to the workplace every day.