This winter quarter, I had the opportunity to collaborate on a project for Piroshky Piroshky Bakery (PPB) as part of the Foster Consulting Program. I worked with 5 passionate, kind, and talented students to develop a plan to improve our client’s talent recruitment and revamp their website. We came from a variety of majors and each brought our unique perspectives and background. We were unified around the goal of learning and helping PPB grow. Also, we had two advisors that supported us throughout the project (thanks Jason and Paula!). I think that these factors combined led this to be the smoothest team and project I’ve worked on.
We had weekly conversations with our clients to better understand their culture and pain points to develop specific recommendations. I was able to feel the family-like culture that Olga, PPB’s owner, had crafted just from these meetings. It was also inspiring to see how well her team worked in synergy as they tried to plan their response to the recent local crisis (downtown shooting, COVID-19, etc.) PPB already had a designated employee to build the website, so we were able to see them implement our recommendations week-to-week. These meetings were also an opportunity for us to ask why they made a certain website or recruitment decision. Understanding their reasoning brought up new considerations that helped us to make better recommendations in the future.
A highlight of the program was our client site visit. My team took a field trip to downtown Seattle, and Olga gave us a tour of their original Pike Place Market location and Columbia Tower location. I was impressed by how efficiently they used the store space and how many details were necessary to create a safe and friendly environment. The final presentation was the most rewarding part of the program, where we shared our key findings and recommendations with the client. We each presented the portions of the project we researched the most on. I focused on how PPB could improve its website functionality and user experience through cultural immersion and use of design. This quarter-long project with Piroshky Piroshky Bakery was such an engaging and educational experience, and I’m excited to see their final website soon!
Guest post by Krystal Graylin, UW Foster Consulting Program Participant, and Freshman 2023.