Tag Archives: tips

What Interning at an Agency Taught Me

Hey Readers, I was reading an article for my social media class when inspiration sparked to write this blog post. After the first week of classes, I already had a sense of accomplishment because things we were talking about in my classes were things I had learned this summer. If you ever get the opportunity to intern at Ogilvy, I highly suggest it. But if not, here’s a list of things about what interning in an agency taught me.

  1. Producing a TV spot isn’t as easy as it looks. The process in order to produce a simple TV spot could take a year, or longer. The amount of account planning, strategy and creative that needs to be put in place is extensive. The work that has to be completed before the shoot even happens, is more than you’ll ever learn in a classroom. Rounds and rounds of revision will be done, numerous ideas will be shot down, and at the end of it you will have a TV spot.
  2. If you have a temper, you shouldn’t work in this industry. Sometimes clients can make you mad, upset, happy, sad, etc. Never lash out at a co-worker, your boss and especially the client. If there’s a problem, speak with your supervisor because if something bad happens because you couldn’t hold in your temper – it’s all on you. It goes the same with co-workers. If you have to take a walk and a few deep breaths, do it. Don’t ever start fights at work, it’s not worth it – EVER.
  3. Communication is the most important asset to do well. It’s not always easy to be on the same page, but you have to communicate. The client will miss things and you will miss things, so you have to constantly communicate or mistakes will be made. This is the communications industry, and there’s no joke about it. Communication is always key with the client, your boss, your team, etc.
  4. Be concise, be thorough – think brevity. I learned this in one of my classes last year, but experienced it more this summer. If you have to explain something, make sure you know what you are going to say. Because if you don’t know and just babble on, no one will understand you. I’ve done it, we all have. It’s all about learning how to explain things concisely without leaving out any details. If you have to study, do it. I did it, and ended up doing a lot better because of it.
  5. Be a team player. Sometimes agencies seem very cutthroat because we all want to excel. However, you can’t forget that everything that is created is not possible without your team. Think synergy – without it your team will suffer. A team that works together well will produce better work. And remember, we all have a lot to deal with, but it’s a matter of how you deal with it all. Creatives have a lot on their plate, so do account planners, production managers, account managers, etc. We all have stuff we have to deal with, but being a team player will always make it easier.

I learned so many more things than that this summer, so I made a short bullet list below… because it’s a lot. (Although, I can’t complain – BEST LEARNING EXPERIENCE EVER)

  • Always follow the creative brief
  • Spreadsheets and timelines are your friend
  • Deadlines are not to be joked about
  • Retouching is a huge process
  • Read emails very thoroughly or you’ll miss something
  • Organization is a skill set
  • Manage your time properly, or get burned
  • Powerpoint presentations shouldn’t have many words
  • You are the presentation, not the powerpoint
  • Styleguides take time to put together
  • Smile, even if you’re having a bad day
  • Study the brand and what’s going on
  • Google docs are amazing
  • Your fellow interns are pretty awesome people
  • Stay on top of everything – it’s hard but just do it
  • Advertising is pretty cool

So that’s my list. I hope you had a wonderful labor day weekend! I know I did rocking my strappy sandal wedges out and about with my friends. (Athens is no place for stilettos).

x KMSH

Tips on Interning Abroad

IMG_0554It’s the beginning of summer, and I’m sure plenty of you in college have friends studying or interning abroad. If you’re getting the itch do to it too, hold on one second. I had an amazing experience interning in Irish parliament, but it could’ve gone a lot better! And I mean it! Read my tips below, and you’ll see why:

  1. Look at all options. I picked a terrible program (CIS Abroad… stay away from them). I wish I would’ve done a placement program and found my own apartment, so I wasn’t 45 minutes outside the city by bus.
  2. Don’t settle. I would’ve loved doing my internship in London, but it was way too expensive. In the end, I didn’t settle. I had an amazing experience… I mean how many people do you know have worked in parliament?
  3. Be prepared. Financially, mentally, emotionally, physically – the whole nine yards. If you’re not ready before that day comes, prepare yourself and settle down. It’ll all work out in the end.
  4. Have fun. Again, I wish some things could’ve been different, but make the most out of your situation and have fun!

I now know that I can live abroad and me totally fine. Not everything went as planned, but I learned a lot about myself and my profession. I wouldn’t trade it for the world, and hopefully I’ll be living in London in the years to come. (I may have a mild obsession with all things british…)

Stay fabulous readers!

x KMSH

How to Gain Followers on Pinterest

NORDPINPinterest is fun, time consuming and gives the best ideas. I used to be a Pinterest addict, but then I got busy and slowed it way down. However, in my free time, I’m usually on Pinterest while watching Mad Men. While Pinterest may be fun and give you great ideas, it can also be a great PR/marketing tool. One of my favorite brands on Pinterest is Nordstrom. They engage with users and pin all of the time. Those two things are keys to gaining followers on Pinterest, if you’re a brand. If you’re trying to gain followers solo, there are a few things you can do to make your profile pinnable.

  • Pin a lot. If you don’t pin all the time, people won’t pin you. It’s as simple as that.
  • Specify your boards. I used to only have one fashion board with over 2,300 pins. I couldn’t find my favorite pins after the 2,000th pin, so I decided to create another fashion board more focused on designers and couture.
  • Pin others pins. It’s similar to Twitter, if you follow someone they may follow you back. If you pin other peoples pins, they’ll pin you right back. It’s the way it works.
  • Pin what you love. Pin what you want to pin. If you don’t, why are you on Pinterest?

Pinterest is simple. You just have to specify your boards and pin a lot. Don’t forget about engaging with others and pinning others pins. I have over 5,000 pins… a dent in the Pin-o-sphere. There are some out there with tens of thousands of pins. Can you keep up?

What do you like to pin on Pinterest?

x KMSH

How to deal with rude Coworkers

charliebHi Readers, so this post is not about anyone in particular because all of the people I work with are amazing! I was reading an article and the idea just popped into my head, because how do you deal with rude coworkers? Honestly, I really dislike rude people. Even if they aren’t trying to be rude and come off as rude, I am still not a fan. Just follow the Mother’s Golden Rule of “If you don’t have something nice to say, say nothing at all.” If more people would do this, there would be a lot less drama in the world. Until then, here are some tips on dealing with rude coworkers.

  • Breathe. Unfortunately some people are naturally rude. Whenever they speak, it will come off the wrong way. It’s all about their tone – which unless they change themselves, nothing will change. However if you know someone like this and don’t know whether they are being rude or not, just breathe. Hard working people don’t have the time for attitude, END OF STORY.
  • Move on. I’m not going to lie, this tip is hard. Some people truly don’t care and this is easy for them, but for others it’s not. If you work in PR, a lot of what we do is about perception and you don’t want to be perceived as hurt – ESPECIALLY in an office setting. So take a deep breath, go grab a diet coke and take your mind off of it.
  • Talk to HR. If you notice this person is being inexplicably rude to you all the time for no reason and is causing other people problems in the office, it’s time to go to HR. You can always file a complaint anonymously, and sometimes you can only do so much. If you don’t feel like going to HR and would rather deal with them directly, do not do it in front of everyone else and remain stephanieecalm. If you get angry and they get defensive, who knows what can happen? (You could get fired for starting a fight…)
  • Stay positive. I have dealt with many people in the past who don’t care what other people think and are naturally rude. When you are in an office setting, it’s hard to focus on things when someone is always bringing you down. My best advice is to always stay positive. Listen to some upbeat music, take a stroll on your lunch break or eat a cupcake. Do whatever will make you feel better and forget about the jerk who said a rude comment towards you. They should know better by now, but you just have to be the bigger person.

Rude people will always inhabit the earth. It’s a factor of life we all just have to deal with, but if you stay focused and positive it’ll all work out in the end. And if you ever get hurt by a rude coworker, there’s always happy hour or retail therapy…

(I suggest both if the person is really a jerk).

x KMSH

 

No Internship set yet? No worries

keep calm and chaseHey Readers, I hope your weather isn’t as dreary as it is here in Athens. It was 66 degrees yesterday, and today it’s rainy and cold. I also really hope the reports of snow are false, because I am sick of snow! I want spring, not the polar vortex or trees with no leaves on them. I want green grass, green trees and the ability to wear skirts and dresses without tights. March better prove me wrong. Anyways, to get to the point of this article, it’s the middle of Internship application season. I started in January and still have nothing set, but if you are in the same boat, DO NOT FREAK OUT!

Companies can be slow. Finding interns is sometimes the last thing on their mind. Remember, HR can receive hundreds of applications and it takes time to go through them. Yes, many end up in the trashcan but even if yours is in the keep pile, it can take awhile. I have only applied to four places so far (all paid) and I still have to apply to a few more. So if you’re still waiting, just relax. There is still time! Some places accept applications until April – meaning there’s still a month left to apply. I have a few places I need to apply to, so keep applying and be patient. This of course is coming from usually the least patient person in the room, but I’m working on it. Here are tips on what to do while waiting:

Keep applying. It doesn’t hurt right? It takes time to fill out an internship application because you have to write a different cover letter, send different writing samples, etc. to every place. NEVER and I mean never, ever send the same generic cover letter to every place. You won’t get an internship, you’ll end up spending the summer working in retail or something. Tailor each cover letter to each job description, you’ll be happier in the end.

Follow up. If you had a phone screen or interview and didn’t send a thank you/follow up that was a BIG mistake. Always, always, always follow up. Then you’ll know what’s going on. If they don’t respond, there’s a chance they’re still reviewing applications. Remember, some companies take awhile to pick interns even if it’s narrowed down. If you follow up, it’ll help you in the long run. I didn’t hear back from an agency for six weeks, until I found out I am in the second round for interviews. I should’ve followed up to know whether they were still deciding or not. But instead, I freaked out and was happily surprised.

Don’t be disappointed. Whenever you’re apply for jobs or internships, you will get rejected. It’s okay and it happens. Sometimes the project the company is planning fits better with another candidate. You can have amazing skills and know what you’re doing, but sometimes it’s not a right fit. Applying for internships and jobs it’s all about the right fit, so if you get rejected don’t be disappointed. There will always be another opportunity that is a better fit.

Be prepared. Do your research while you’re waiting. Prepare for any interviews, phone screens, writing tests, etc. The more prepared you are, the better you’ll feel. If you have everything done and ready by the time the interview comes around, you’ll be more relaxed when it happens. Figure out recent client work or projects the company worked on, take notes, look at common interview questions, etc. Interviews are scary, but they’re less scary when you’re ready for them.

Just keep swimming. One of my favorite scenes from Finding Nemo is when Dory sings “just keep swimming” over and over again. Don’t discourage yourself and continue to look at all of the possibilities. As long as you do it right, you’ll find something. So just keep swimming along and it will come to you.

If you’re worried about not getting an internship because you’re still waiting, don’t fret. There’s still time and if you keep these things in mind, it’ll help you in the long run.

“You need to understand that life isn’t what you’re given, it’s what you create, what you conquer and what you aim to achieve.” -Unkown

Just keep swimming readers.

x KMSH