There. I’ve said it.
Although, technically as I write this, I’m 29.99. But by the time you read this post, the unthinkable will have occurred. My 20s will be over.
If you’re over 30, you’re rolling your eyes.
If you’re under 30, you totally get me.
Where do I go from here? Backwards seems like a good start. And a good time to reminisce about the last decade, specifically the last 8 years that I’ve been in the working world. Since, if you didn’t know, Padilla has been my work-home since graduating college.
With that, I give you my top five learnings and tips from my career in marketing. And a couple funny stories for you too.
- Your Colleagues are Your Family
My work family is the reason I’ve remained at Padilla my entire career. Ask anyone who has left Padilla the most difficult part of leaving and “the people” is always their answer. My team members are my friends, my family, my pseudo-children and even occasionally, mistaken by strangers as my parents. You spend the majority of your time with the people around you at work. Embrace them.
Weirdest Colleague Story: A last minute client execution at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival meant sharing an Airbnb with our clients… and a hot tub, after a long hard day of meeting celebrities like Christina Hendricks, Joe Manganiello and Cheryl Hines.
- Travel for Work & Life
I’ve been lucky to travel frequently for my clients and Padilla. Do it if you can. It’s not only helped me grow, it’s introduced me to industry changemakers and opened my eyes to new approaches and opportunities for my clients. Also look for opportunities to swap offices. A year ago I moved to Chicago, and began working out of our FoodMinds office. It’s introduced me to wonderful new people, new capabilities and has even helped propel my career forward.
Best Trip: You can’t beat my 2015 press trip to Parma, Italy. It was essentially a work-ation.
Worst Trip: My colleague Jason Stemm and I got stuck in the Colorado mountains headed to the Aspen Food & Wine Classic with no cell service and a broken car. He remained calm; I did not.
- Fight for Yourself
One of the best pieces of advice I received was to sell my success. You can’t do that if you don’t fight for your ideas. At Padilla, we pride ourselves on an entrepreneurial culture. You make your experience what you wish, and if you bring a creative, executable idea to the table, you could very well make it happen.
(One of) My Best Decisions: Being bold enough at age 24 to look at former PadillaCRT President Mark Raper in the eye (after PSB acquired CRT/Tanaka), and ask if I could support their food & beverage business.
- Laugh Off the Challenges
No job is perfect. My solution to the most difficult days lately (when it’s not red wine) is to laugh. I’ve had my share of crap situations. Lifting boxes outside in 100o heat and 95% humidity in heels, locating missing legs of prosciutto (they ALWAYS go missing), losing fully written documents and calling IT crying, and scheduling top-tier media interviews in the wrong time zone are just a few.
I’ve learned that we can’t take ourselves too seriously, nor our clients. We have to laugh through the challenges.
Biggest Challenge Recently: Last year, I came incredibly close to renting a car and smuggling legs of bone-in prosciutto across the Canadian border.
- Push the Boundaries
No client or staffer has ever said, “I love doing the same thing every year and never want to change.” Push yourself, and push the boundaries. Challenge convention and ask smart questions. Don’t worry about playing outside your title or bringing good thinking to someone at at a much higher one. We should lift colleagues (and clients!) up by identifying ways to make them successful as well as ourselves.
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