Colleen Burton works in project management for Harper Global. As she describes it, "I deal with all things logistics. I am more of the "vendor-facing" representative in project management. I communicate daily with our recruiters, vendors, facilities, audio/visual companies, etc. However, I am also highly involved on the client side."
Colleen has been with Harper Global for 15 years, and Harper Global was her first employer after college. She was drawn to Harper Global because it is a small company, feels like a family, and lacks bureaucracy. Colleen explains, "If you want something changed or believe something can be better, change can happen as quickly as you want it to around here – no big bureaucratic company departments to go through."
Like many in the Harper Global team, Colleen loves projects with patients. "I love patient projects where you can see, and hear from, the type of people needing pharmaceutical help to improve their lives. HCPs are also very important to our work, but there is just something about hearing from the patient's mouth how their lives are better because of modern medicine." Colleen also enjoys her work because it offers constant change and consistency. While this may sound contradictory, Colleen adds, "What I mean by this is I love the consistency of every project having the same foundation. For my department, the details of setting up, executing, and fielding each project are always fundamentally the same. BUT each project is unique with research details, the respondent we are recruiting, and so forth. It's a comfortable constant with just enough uniqueness that keeps it interesting for me".
Colleen and her husband have four daughters, ranging in age from 5 to 14. So, it should be no surprise that she is a huge homebody, enjoying time with her family. She describes herself as an extroverted introvert: “I love socializing, but I need my alone time more.” For Colleen a perfect day is spent with her family. “Hot sunshine, sitting poolside with my kids swimming happily together (and not fighting) while my husband and I talk, listen to good music, and drink margaritas. There is probably also something delicious on the grill!” She also enjoys gardening, visiting wineries and breweries, and traveling as much as possible with four children!
Colleen makes an impact on Harper Global clients by organizing details to make projects run seamlessly and more efficiently. However, she also always comes back to the “why” of patient research – helping them lead better lives. “I love seeing the impact we can have on people’s lives. There are also lots of sad stories we hear, and it really helps you keep your own life in perspective. There are ailments and daily struggles not everyone realizes. If pharmaceuticals can help people live more peaceful and successful lives, I want to have a part in helping with that!”
There are two things Colleen would like to do in the next five years: try skydiving and visit Hawaii. Her personal mantra is “Everything happens for a reason, and you are right where you need to be.” While it may not be easy to understand the reason, she strongly believes that there is one. “Even for being stuck in traffic jams!” So, we hope there is a reason that she is in the right place to achieve her dreams.