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Empowering Success: A Female Leader’s Journey in Project-Based Consulting

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May 27, 2024
By Michelene Maguire, Marketing

In the world of project-based consulting, where precision meets innovation, the role of female leaders like Melissa Christie, CPA, CGA is redefining success. As Director, Consulting Services at AMR Group Limited, Melissa brings a wealth of expertise and a unique perspective to the forefront of the industry. Her journey not only exemplifies leadership but also embodies the essence of thriving in a project-centric environment.

Melissa’s passion for project-based consulting is deeply rooted in her background. With a foundation in project management and a career shaped by delivering results, she thrives in the structured yet fluid world of project-based firms. “I love working on many different client engagements concurrently and balancing unique delivery timelines,” she shares, reflecting on the inherent sense of accomplishment and purpose that drives her work. As a professional accountant, Melissa finds synergy in the cyclical nature of project-based consulting—a field that continuously challenges and evolves.

At AMR, Melissa’s leadership style is marked by a client-centric approach and a commitment to excellence. She emphasizes understanding clients’ needs beyond the surface, recognizing that their requests often conceal layers of underlying objectives. “A willingness to probe deeper and educate a client is critical,” she asserts, highlighting the importance of building strong connections and ensuring clarity throughout the consulting process. “Our clients depend on us to understand what they ‘want’ but also to understand what they ‘need’. They trust us to provide comprehensive recommendations, and to lead them through to the final results. Seeing those solutions come to life for our clients, is always a great feeling”.

In her role, Melissa champions agile project management methodologies tailored to clients’ unique requirements. While maintaining standardized processes, she prioritizes flexibility and responsiveness, aligning every project with the client’s vision and scope. “Client focus is paramount,”, emphasizing the firm’s dedication to delivering projects on time and within budget—a cornerstone of their success. “We work with clients of various sizes, across various industries. While certain elements of our approach remain standard—and I love a good standard process—not everything can be cookie-cutter, and being able to pivot based on client circumstances can be a game-changer. It also keeps it interesting!”

AMR’s years of experience with information system migrations, including numerous engagements with ERP’s built for project-based firms, like Deltek Vantagepoint, exemplifies Melissa’s strategic approach. By enabling clients to focus on business success rather than system complexities, her team embodies best practices and drives operational efficiency. As a CPA, she’s able to understand clients’ fiscal-based initiatives and translate them into real, system-based solutions. Clients value AMR for their expertise, relying on them to navigate complex transitions with confidence and precision.

Melissa’s leadership style is characterized by mentorship and empowerment. Drawing from her own experiences benefiting from mentoring and coaching, she fosters an environment where team members are encouraged to excel and grow. “The foundation of our success is teamwork” she explains, underscoring her commitment to recognizing and celebrating achievements within her team.

Working with seasoned professionals like AMR’s Managing Director, Barry Goman, enables her to engage with the macro picture of business strategy, driving impactful outcomes and fostering long-term relationships with industry leading firms like CBCL, Cowater International, EVOQ Architecture, and Underhill Geomatics.

“Melissa is a key reason AMR continues to grow, diversify, and build on it’s 35-year history” states Barry Goman. “All AMR stakeholders look forward to benefiting from her expanding leadership role.”

In conclusion, Melissa Christie embodies the spirit of female leadership in project-based consulting—a domain where expertise meets empowerment. Her journey reflects resilience, innovation, and a deep-seated commitment to client satisfaction. As Melissa continues to inspire and excel, she paves the way for a new generation of leaders, challenging conventions and propelling project-based firms towards excellence and growth.

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