Starting as an intern at Reading Room
24th August 2012
I had never worked in a communications agency, at least in any professional capacity. Surely my own website, blog, twitter account and a more dedicated approach to Facebook were minimum pre-requisites.
And what was their interpretation of ‘internship’, anyway? Wikipedia’s was pretty broad. Conversations with a number of friends in the industry left me with a sense of foreboding. Having just come out of six months volunteer work, making coffee for executives, potentially without pay for the next few months in exchange for a shoe-in to the industry was not a relishing concept.
But the website espoused the values which I held as paramount, described the position with flair, and with a flexible approach to desired skillsets: What could I offer? What did I want to be? How far did I want to go? Far from a vague list of esoteric skillsets, the onus fell back to me. I put together a cover letter trying to broadly address as many potentially relevant competencies as I felt I had, cautiously flavoured it with a bit of my own flair, sent her off and hoped for the best.
The first day was deciding for me. Adam McLeod introduced me to everyone, who shook my hand with genuine smiles and forgave me when I forgot their names. I was shown my desk with its dual monitors, email addresses set up, and Chen Reed accommodatingly took a break from his scheduled leave to assist me with log ins.
I was off and running. So much was so unfamiliar that I left to instinct, common sense, and many questions of all my new colleagues; they were all very accommodating. By the end of the week I was celebrating my good fortune in finding such an open company culture, full of such welcoming, motivated, engaged, friendly, helpful and highly competent people.
Almost three months have flown by since then – only three months. I’m delighted to be working here still, acquiring responsibilities, challenges enough to motivate and educate, balanced with support and encouragement to go as far as I am prepared – just as assured in the job description. (And I’ve probably had more coffee offered me than I’ve ever been requested to make.) I’ve socialised and laughed with professionals at all levels of the company, including our Australian CEO Sarah and her partner Nick, and am equally delighted to have so many new friends in my colleagues. I’m feeling comfortable, confident, as hungry as ever, optimistic…
… Very lucky, and proud to be a small part of the company.