Sustainable teams start with empowered project leads
Rachel Gertz is a Co-founder and Director of Delivery and Growth at Louder Than Ten. She helps small to medium sized digital agencies transform their digital PM operations through hands-on training and consulting. Rachel helps owners, directors, project leaders, and delivery teams align their strategic approach to projects so they can fulfill their role in generating revenue and cutting down expenses to create healthier, happier, long lasting teams — through a people first lens. Her mission at Louder Than Ten is to propel tech workers through an uncertain future by training digital companies how to give power to the people leading their projects.
A little background
I’m a trained teacher with a Psych and Community Health background and teach folks who run digital studios and creative departments in the US, Canada, and overseas through Louder Than Ten. I consult for, coach, and train owners, directors, digital project managers, account managers, producers, and their delivery teams how to think critically and strategically about their project systems so they can support profitable outcomes and healthy operations. I focus on teaching ways for them to reset and manage stakeholder expectations, while offering a simple framework for better estimating, scoping, and forecasting workflows — they enjoy real-time learning while they work.
Speaking and training
In addition to designing and running our programs, I also speak and do workshops at local and international events, I support the Vancouver DPM meetup and DPM Slack group. My love of learning and unconventional approach is rooted in my English/Education degree, my passion for systems thinking and problem-based learning, trauma informed healing, and several years of program management experience working with both kids and adults in literacy, healthcare, and suicide prevention.
Where to find me
If you look for me, I’ll be teaching, flexing my writing fingers for our digital magazine, Coax, speaking (or ranting) about sustainable processes while upholding our wicked team. I’m thrilled that I get to wake up, shuffle to work, and help my team build programs that promote empathy, encourage inclusivity, close the skills gap, and prepare people for the changes that will come with job automation and (hopefully) a more democratic society.
Helping projects and people
I’ve been training project leads, freelancers, and companies while providing workshops in project management, process, and digital strategy since 2012. Before that, I was a remote and in-house digital PM and business developer for several boutique agencies in Canada and the US including our own studio since good old 2009. I’ve also been writing content since I had fingers and a spinal cord. Content strategy and UX anchors everything I do. I’ve also got a love for and appreciation for operations and financials — especially teaching apprentices how their organizations make and lose money so they can support their profitability and sustainability. I believe that project management is a skill as much as it is a role. Everyone benefits from learning the ropes.
We believe in an ethical technological future
Fundamentally, we believe that software can solve incredibly big and complex problems, but in order to do that, highly intuitive, adaptive leaders need to run those teams so they can stay focused on building things our world actually needs. Good processes elevate our industry and good people enable us to solve problems that matter. We need more of both.
We support community
We see a digital community that is getting stronger and are doing whatever it takes to decrease silos and barriers for people who are interested in doing creative work together. This means supporting a diverse community of digital project leads and their teams and encouraging everyone to embrace continuous improvement. We also aim to help fix the intense shortage of project and product managers as industries are thrown sideways by technological advancement. We believe that project leads are the lynchpins in this industry: they have the power to shape their organizations and help them thrive. Now, we have to connect these communities around the world and start reshaping the tech industry.
People who manage process and projects need love and support. They’re creative thinkers, they’re adept, they’re complex problem solvers. They’re loveable hardasses who champion their teams. And for that reason and all of the above, we will spend our lives supporting, celebrating, and upholding them.
- Stakeholder Management: Building your Work BICEPS | Aten Design Webinar
- DPM Summit, Memphis (Keynote)
- Ground Control, London
- Design & Content Conference, Vancouver
- Vancouver Design Week, Vancouver
- DPM Summit, Philly
- DPM Summit, Austin
- Trade School, Vancouver
- Pecha Kucha, Calgary
- Dark History of PM, Vancity DPM Meetup
- Metrics that matter, Vancity DPM Meetup
- Static vs signal, Dotall, Montréal
- Bridging the Gap Between Sales and Project Management, Kickass PM
- Words & pixels, Vancouver
- Soap! Krakow
- Giant Conference, Charleston
- Every Day DPM workshop, Vancouver
- Bureau of Digital; DPM Summit, Philly