To Achieve a Balance Between Engineers and Designers, Meet Mirjana, our UI/UX guru!

Todor Panev
Todor Panev
Published: 08.07.2021

Mirjana Gjorgjioska a.k.a Mimi joined us a few years ago, coming from a UI/UX studio in Macedonia. She brought her experience and expertise in the design world and established the UX/UI department at Web Factory. Having a background in design, marketing and engineering gives her the power to understand the business, the client, and the engineers. Let’s read more about her story at Web Factory and find out more about hobbies, life and passion.

How did you first learn about Web Factory?

Two people from the company core have been very dear friends of mine since my university days. They were among the best students of our generation, always motivational and inspiring.

I followed the company's growth through those many years, was very proud of how far they got, so I did not have a single doubt whether I wanted to work with them when they invited me to be a part of their professional journey as well.

What do you find the most challenging at Web Factory?

Being around people who are very hardworking, super smart, and always give their best to come up with the right solution to any problem we face, makes your everyday job more challenging than usual.

Meaning, whenever you provide the design solution for a particular request, no matter how big or small, you really need to be ready to stand by it, because your teammates will challenge your proposal in every way possible until everyone is sure we deliver the best option to the client.

Not only the development team, but PM, QA, Marketing, etc. will share all the concerns from their perspective which is very good for the project since it broadens the aspects to be considered in order to cover both the users and business needs and expectations.

Mirjana posing for our WeLoveTech campaign to promote the company culture and engineers

What is your role and day-to-day responsibilities at Web Factory?

As a design lead in the company, my day-to-day responsibilities are to keep up the design team on a level that always advocates for the users by taking into consideration the business needs at the same time.

Our job as a team is to broaden the design culture in the company among our teammates regardless of their role, so everyone can contribute to the design solutions from their point of view as we can provide the best option possible from any aspect.

By bringing the collaborative design to the scene, we believe we can emphasize the quality of any digital product or service which is beneficial for both the clients and the end users, while our people would be much happier and satisfied with the solutions they create, implement and deliver.

If you could pick one theme for Web Factory to turn into a book about the company, what would it be? Please explain a bit.

I would rather turn Web Factory into a family drama series with lots of comic scenes :D

How do you describe your work personality vs. your home life personality?

My work and home life personality are pretty much interrelated with one another. I would call it the same personality making a different impact on my professional and private life, sometimes being good or bad in both cases.

In general, I have an extremely analytical mind—always busy and overthinking. Usually, it goes hand in hand with my job responsibilities resulting in well thought solutions where I hardly foresee something.

Besides that, I always have someone to raise a flag if I go too far, so I know when to stop. In life, it is a total disaster! Living in past and future scenarios lets the present moments slip through your fingers very easily.

Other than that, I have been very competitive since childhood, but bad at dealing with failures :D I hate to lose and will always try to improve afterwards. I’m a hopeless workaholic, so I need to consciously make efforts to enrich my social life.

But I really wish more people would love their job as much as I do, so they have much happier working hours throughout the day :) As a big empath, I’m willing to help others at any time which positively affects both my professional and private relations. Time management used to be my biggest issue— but now I want it all! :D

How do you spend your time outside of the office?

After working hours, I like to cook. I never thought I would enjoy this activity ever, but because it was something I became good at in a short time, I couldn't give up the tasty dishes just like that :D

So I consider myself a very happy person since I get to enjoy one more thing that I have to do on a daily basis :D I used to exercise often or take long walks, usually when going home from work. With the pandemic disrupting some of our daily routines, hopefully we'll get back to it soon or create even better new ones :)

Before working at Web Factory, what was the most unusual or interesting job you’ve ever had?

Before Web Factory, I used to be doing almost the same design activities, so I couldn't pick one as unusual. But, I would recall my childhood days when I used to help my father in his workshop where he was improving existing products to make them more functional and serve better.

I guess it had a huge impact on defining my problem-solving mindset and helped me do a better job nowadays. Practically speaking, we both have been doing the same job, me in the digital world, him in the physical world :)

Any hobbies, things you are doing in your free time? Why?

I read a lot of books which I haven't been doing for a long period. I enjoyed reading only design literature in the past few years and I almost forgot how much books can broaden your perspectives and affect your daily life routine or big decisions.

On the weekends, I used to spend the time riding a bike which now I guess will progress in longer kilometers rather than riding uphills since I had a fall and broke my shoulder recently. I travel whenever I have the opportunity.

Last summer, before the pandemic, I had a chance to take a bicycle ride on Dugi Otok and Pag islands in Croatia, which was an amazing experience to have such a mini seaside tour visiting some breathtaking wild beaches on the way. When I can, I also love going hiking with my family.

Mirjana’s cat helping her build the new Web Factory branding

If you were an animal what would you be? Why?

I have such admiration for animals that I couldn't even relate people to them. They can teach you so much more than you can learn from humans—values people have lost over the time.

For example, Mark Twain has a saying I like about cats, which goes: "Of all God's creatures, there is only one that cannot be made slave of the lash. That one is the cat. If man could be crossed with the cat it would improve the man, but it would deteriorate the cat". Having lived with and analysed cats my whole life, I can guarantee this! :D

Describe what you were like at age 10

Very tiresome! :D My parents needed to cope up with zillions of questions on a daily basis, on every subject possible. Every time they got tired, my mum used to direct me to my dad telling me he knew the answer.

If I went to him, he would have told me I will learn it once I study physics only to get rid of me (imagine how exhausting I must have been, since they have always been very patient and dedicated parents who taught me so many things at a very early age). So I waited.

Then I studied physics, very devotedly. Still, the physics didn't give me the answers to all the questions I had :D I am still waiting...

If given a chance, who would you like to be for a day?

Any great inventor from the past. I would give anything to feel that moment of rapture when you give life to something that hasn't existed before that forever changes people's lives for the better.

Tell us something that nobody knows about you at Web Factory?

Well... when I was in primary school I wanted to train in gymnastics so badly, but there wasn't any club in my hometown. One day, exactly on my birthday, a friend of mine told me there was a club open where we could go together.

Very excited that my dreams are finally coming true, I couldn't wish for a better present. We went there the very same day and joined the classes. But something didn't feel right... First, they started teaching us how to walk or to perform some steps and movements unusual for such a discipline.

I started wondering why that was so easy, but I guessed those must be some initial exercises for beginners. They were giving some girls to wear books on their heads, but it still didn't ring a bell...

Finally, a few weeks later, they mentioned a video shooting for the next class and everything happening before made complete sense! Yes, I was taking modeling classes thinking I'm becoming a gymnast :D

Considering how much I hated cameras even then, I didn't show up for the shooting or any other class, ever again, although I still remember some catwalk movements :D However, I gave up my gymnastics "career" at the very same moment! :D

Mirjana is the master when it comes to putting chaos in order

She is the person that thinks about the best way for you to click on something, where to put it, how it looks, and why it should be there. If you don’t agree with something she made, maybe you should give us a call and explain why? :) Mimi is always eager to hear the positive or negative comments on her work, and help us all improve.

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