William McMichael JohnStaff Graduate

William McMichael

University of Technology Sydney
Advisory Consultant
William studied Bachelor of Arts in Communications (Writing and Cultural Studies) and International Studies (Spanish) at University of Technology, Sydney

Who is Johnstaff? What is your position?

Johnstaff Projects is a diverse management and professional services delivery practice. Our team provides Project Management, Construction Services, Cost Management, and Advisory Services. My role in the business has been to support our Advisory Services Team in both active and upcoming projects.

Johnstaff Advisory aims to provide a strategic service focussed on optimising business operations by providing robust management and investment analysis. We advise consistently and are supported by specialised service offerings comprising of investment decision making, transaction and process management, program realisation, organisational transformation, strategy, policy and regulation.

The Advisory Consultant position is understood as a learning role exposing employees to a variety of disciplines, skill sets, sectors and clients. The position primarily provides support to Senior Consultants within Advisory Services in the consultation process by contributing to the delivery of documentation and assisting in research and analytical processes.

What's your background?

I grew up in Sydney’s inner west attending Kegworth Primary and then Cranbrook School – I never knew professionally what I wanted to do nor where I was heading. I worked through my early twenties to support myself through tertiary education at the University of Technology, Sydney, majoring in both communications and Spanish language and culture. Returning to Australia, after 12 months studying in Barcelona, I no longer wanted to be a part of any journalism or translational industry-related work. I began to hunt for new jobs without any real idea or direction as to what I was looking for.

The Johnstaff Advisory Services Team were advertising a position describing their need for a young professional who were interested in a junior learning role; somebody that enjoyed outcome-based problem-solving—I’ve since been working at Johnstaff for eight months and think it still is the right place for me. 

Could someone with a different background do your job?

Of course. The Consultant position is suited to any young professional eager to learn new concepts. The role does not require any specific professional background; however, it does require you to be proactive, admitting to yourself that you are not always going to get everything correct and that there are clever people around you to encourage a better result.

What's the coolest thing about your job?

The ‘coolest’ thing about my job would have to be the people we work with. The amount of experience that some executives carry with them, the level of professionalism that consultants demonstrate, the willingness of all in between that offer to help—is all invaluable. The strategic foresight that our leadership team possess noticeably filters down, encouraging our more senior consultants to drive their projects and individual goals, pushing the less experienced into new areas and tasks.

What are the limitations of your job?

The only limitation you might have at Johnstaff is one you have placed upon yourself. The position I am in promotes a consistent learning experience. Whether it be a complex process, technique to manage a difficult person, technique to improve a particular skill, training to develop your understanding of a program or software you were interested in, overcoming a particular fear (ie. public speaking), Johnstaff is incredibly supportive of your professional development. I don’t tend to have to work over my weekends and the people that I work with I enjoy working with—how often can you say that?

3 pieces of advice for yourself when you were a student...

  • There is no great expectation that you are an expert on everything; especially as a graduate. Given time, experience and exposure to concepts and support you will always be able to grasp complex concepts and overcome once-thought difficult tasks.
  • Do not be easily sold by large companies/brands; you will learn and progress at a faster rate in a smaller company with excellent support and resources willing to put forth their time and knowledge toward you (as opposed to being diluted in a large but globally recognised business).
  • Good manners and sincerity go a lot further than you think.