Today marks my 365th day of full-time employment. University seems like a mere distant memory, I still have moments when I have to pinch myself to realise where I am now, a fully fledged adult and definitely loving every minute of it. Considering the present climate, I’m very thankful to have this job. A lot of blessings, more on the reverse.
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Prior to starting at IU-HQ, I had only 2 months experience at We Are Social and a few months in retail so I was slightly anxious about what kind of working environment it would be. To my surprise, it’s the most relaxed atmosphere ever – positive, music constantly playing, real nice interior design (no boring white office) and last but by no means the least; a great set of colleagues. Perfect place to create and develop ideas, ask DJB and Annabel as they’ve paid me visit at work before. Marketing is incredibly diverse, we have a handful of people who are OxBridge graduates, music/television/radio alumni, developers and more. There’s just so much to absorb from each of the people around me, often like Pedro, I feel like a sponge at work. Taking in everything and anything!
No, I don’t like the song. I just put it here to impress my boss. I had no clue who they were till I started at IU!
Despite all our age differences and distinct backgrounds, my bosses have successfully created a real close-knit family feel across the agency. Which is one of the main reasons why I enjoy working here, perfect type of conditions to grow in. The company isn’t that big in terms of numbers so there’s always an opportunity to work on something different and get stuck in. It’s exciting, I’ve some how started to ‘produce’ projects – a year of ago if you asked me what the role of a producer was I’d respond with ‘you mean a producer like Dr. Dre?’ -__-
A few key learnings:
- Don’t be afraid to speak up. You’ve been employed for a reason; you have a unique opinion and background to share. Especially if you’re going into marketing, many of us grew up using social media. Same can’t be said for the older folk. I’m still working on this…
- It’s important to read and keep up to speed. Whether it is Mashable, TNW, Seth Godin‘s newsletter to marketing must-read books, it’s essential to read and constantly keep up to date with what’s going on. Especially in the industry that we’re in, everything changes over night. Literally.
- Lists. Eesh, this is a daily thing. Noting down what tasks you have to do on PAPER. Digital is good but nothing beats a good old scribble on paper. No pop-ups to distract you from your notepad.
- Attention to detail. It’s a must, you’re going to have to analyse each and every project with a microscopic lens to churn out any mistakes before throwing it over to the client. They’ll still find mistakes but it’s better to obsess with the details. Even the tiniest of errors can cost you a lot.
- Write down ideas. All your ideas I mean, whenever you a light bulb moment in your head, whether it be on the loo, underground or whilst eating. Jot it down. You never know when that idea will turn out to be your eureka moment.
- Staying positive. Negativity in the workplace is a no-no. Negativity anywhere is a no-no, going to refer y’all to Tahirah’s dope quote a few weeks back. It’s all in the mind, you can honestly do anything you put your mind to. Don’t be afraid to make smart decisions (take some risks!) – your thoughts determine your destiny.
- Be still. In an era of connectedness where we spend much of our time staring at a screen at work, then rush home to stare at another and even during that journey you’re staring at a miniature screen (phone). It’s silly – I try to take 10-20 minutes a day away from everything to think and reflect on what I’ve learnt and everything else that is going on. Breaking free from technology is often difficult for me but being constantly wired in certainly doesn’t help. Renewal of the mind is essential.
- Work = life. I don’t mean this in the workaholic context, I mean it in the sense that work is very much part of your life. I always find it funny when people try to separate the two and have work/home masks. Just be who you are, everywhere. Transfer passion that you have outside of work into your work and vice-versa.
All pretty obvious when I come to think about it but a lot of these learnings, I IGNORED throughout school and university. Sigh.
My most favourite project yet – ASOS Future Stylist 2012. Kani of K is for Kani was this year’s winner!
As you all already know, I work on the ASOS account. We help out with the global retailer’s social media strategy, app development and several others bits and pieces. Our biggest projects are always the big summer and winter sale; at the time when I started, I vaguely remember coming into the office at 9 to see my boss and two other colleagues doing an all nighter on the award-winning summer sale app. I remember setting myself a personal goal of managing the summer sale in 2012 and a year later I am. A rather daunting prospect but I know I can do it. YOLO. *wipes sweat off forehead and sips on champagne*
Surprisingly kept this post rather sweet and short? Could go into a lot more detail but I’ll let the fruits of my work do the talking. Na’mean.