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A Conversation With business Analyst and PM Terry Giancroce

Vero Shiko

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Terry Giancroce

A business professional with a proven track record in Business Analysis/Project Management, Terry Giancroce has a knack to successfully lead client-facing projects, oversee testing strategies and change initiatives. That’s because he is a staunch believer of “The Customer Comes First” philosophy. The Toronto, Ontario native, with a Certified Scrum Master and Certified Business Analyst Professional designation to his credit, learned this while attending Seneca College’s Business Administration program and working at a major Toronto clothing retail store. There he honed his craft of listening to customer needs and working with them to create a solution, hence satisfying the customer.

Away from work, Terry relaxes by playing the drums for two bands (SurgaRush, and The Rural Jurors). He also stays active by playing hockey and tennis. Terry also volunteers as a soccer coach for a local soccer club.

What made you choose to become a business analyst?

Actually for me, I never chose this industry, I fell into it by chance. When I got out of college I began working part-time with Wellington Insurance company as an Underwriter. During my time there I made very many friends. One friend left Wellington Insurance to join a competitor. I soon after joined that same company as an underwriter. When an IT position opened up as a Business Support Analyst, she recommended me. I was just recently married and looking to bring in a bigger paycheck so I went for the interview and got the position.

What trends in Business Analysis excite you?

The thing that really excites me is the increasing adoption of new technology. The progress in cloud technology, and the increasing accessibility of big data – all factors influencing the future of business analysis.

What do you find most challenging about your career?

Early on while I was still working retail, here was a situation where the store manager (a good friend) was let go. And I was quickly promoted into his position. Soon after I was asked to let another colleague of mine go. I had never done this before. I told him that this was the first time I’ve ever had to do this. And that it was quite difficult for me. But I had to let them go. He was visibly disappointed naturally. But he did say that he appreciated my honesty and recognized that I was only doing my job. As it turned out It was a good experience for me. We are still friends today. We stay in contact at least a couple of times a year.

What would you tell others looking to become a Business Analyst?

When I came out of college, I never even heard of Business Analysis let along of choosing this a career. But now, people have the opportunity to think about a career in Business Analysis as Universities and Colleges offer courses. Firstly I’d tell them to validate their interest. Why do you want to become a Business Analyst? Do some research as to what a Business Analyst does. Are there any skills they learned from any previous jobs transferable to the Business Analyst role? If the answer is yes, then start by learning the fundamentals, always be enhancing your skill and get the BA accreditations.

Who has been a role model to you and why?

Someone who was a big influence on me and made a difference in my career as a project manager that I worked with when I was working at an insurance company in Toronto.  She was a great mentor and a great person.  She was a real believer of governance and of the project management methodologies. She encouraged the gathering of ideas from multiple sources and encouraged a team philosophy.

If you could change 1 thing you did in the beginning of your career what would it be?

Everyone has that one regret, but regrets are unproductive. Most are based on doing what we thought was correct at the time.   I do not have too many grievances about the way things have turned out. The one thing I would change is not taking IT courses sooner just to get a greater understanding of the field.  Early on moving from the business unit into the IT department I felt overwhelmed with information, a lot of technical terms went over my head and was too afraid to ask. It really hurt my confidence. Not doing that taught me to take risks in life. I am incredibly grateful for that.

What has been the hardest obstacle you have overcome?

Early on while I was still working retail, here was a situation where the store manager (a good friend) was let go. And I was quickly promoted into his position. Soon after I was asked to let another colleague of mine go. I had never done this before. I told him that this was the first time I’ve ever had to do this. And that it was quite difficult for me. But I had to let them go. He was visibly disappointed naturally. But he did say that he appreciated my honesty and recognized that I was only doing my job. As it turned out It was a good experience for me. We are still friends today. We stay in contact at least a couple of times a year.

What does success look like for you?

I am not sure I’ve ever felt like I have reached the feeling of success! It’s the curse of being a consultant. You never know where your next opportunity takes you. It is the endless pursuit for striving to be the best you can be.  So, I decided that after years of chasing to just embrace the process of discovery. You’re presented with a new challenge every day to face the dragon. So, I just celebrate the victory of being alive.

What is one piece of advice that has helped you through your career?

Never stop learning and treat people with respect.  It’s as simple as that.

When I first started in insurance as an underwriter, I faced a lot of adversity.  When you get a call about insurance when you’re an underwriter, it’s never about you doing a great job.  It’s always a complaint or something went wrong.  When you’re a young person and you think you’re invincible, you think you can start talking back in response.  But a person took me aside and said, “Hey listen, treat people with respect.  It’s not personal.”  From there on, that’s what I strive to do.  You need to be willing to learn and willing to change the way you do things.

I am is a serial entrepreneur who has founded multiple successful businesses in the field of writing, content marketing, web design and also SEO. Ever since graduating from the University of Nairobi, content marketing and writing has been one thing that I have been passionate about and now help's entrepreneurs and businesses alike get their story heard across the world.

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