Working away… and it’s actually not bad!

Hey guys,

So summer has started for everyone and that means I’ve started my co-op position. And you know what? Working ain’t half bad! Well mainly because I had set myself up for the worse and then realized it’s actually a really cool place to work. I’m currently working as an assistant coordinator for consumer engagement at TrojanOne— and before you ask because everyone else does, no, it’s not the condom company. It’s a marketing agency that focuses on brand activation in unique ways.

trojanone

Several reasons why I really like about my job/company:

1) They let me write a blog post on the Oculus Rift, gaming, and Game of Thrones 

2) You want a coffee break? You got a coffee break.

3) Random outings to the nearby Farmer’s Market!

4) Working in Yaletown ❤

5) Potluck Fridays!

6) Also boozy Fridays.

In which drinking on the job is actually okay :')

In which drinking on the job is actually okay :’)

7) Our CEO Mark Harrison’s blog (one of the main reasons why I applied to the company in the first place. I found his blog so funny and real.)

All that being said, TrojanOne is honestly a great place for me to officially start off in the world of marketing. Although our Vancouver office is nestled in Yaletown among lots of start-up companies (and eateries), TrojanOne is not a start up. In fact, this year it’s our 20th anniversary! The company started off doing marketing for sports related initiatives but have since branched off. Under my managers, I’m currently working on projects for BMO and ParticipACTION! Of course, the head office is in Toronto and that is where the bulk of the employees are. It has been quite an experience getting training though conference calls and Skype and I could not help but realize that I finally understand what this video is all about:

Awkward…

Anyway, sure of course I miss having summers to do nothing. But really, this ain’t half bad 🙂

– Karen

Keep On Trooping!

Hey y’all!

It has been a while, but I think I finally found time to post! (Well, squeeze time out anyway.) I cannot believe there is only one more week left of my first-year university life! Although I am looking forward to getting a break from school, I realize that the last week of school means projects and essays are now due, not to mention finals are just right around the corner.

Throughout the last week, I really challenged myself to grab at opportunities. Aside from trying to manage my homework (Chinese oral exam script writing, English final essay draft, Political Science final essay just to name a few), I also applied for clubs and positions within Sauder. I spent much of my first year at university trying to find my interest and learning how to handle the university lifestyle. I went in believing I could easily juggle school, my social life and my family life. Then reality punches me in the face and tells me that it is going to be a lot harder than I thought. Needless to say, I spent my first year finding myself and concentrating on school…meaning I was not as involved as I thought I was going to be. I joined two clubs within my commerce faculty, and went to events for both. I really regret not going to any of the big conferences, so that is definitely on my bucket list for next year. But I feel just going to events was not enough. You need to find something you are interested in and then actually get involved.

I spend a good portion of my first term wondering what I was doing in business school. Thankfully, I asked around and explored some of the available majors. I think it is safe to say that marketing is what I want to concentrate on later on. It is not as rigid as accounting or finance, allowing your creativity and personal thoughts to come into play. I look forward to actually taking marketing courses next year, since year one was really a pre-commerce year. You only get a really brief overview of the world of commerce. I cannot wait for next year! Having said that, I am still plenty nervous because we are required to take more (and harder) courses. Oh well, guess only time will tell how well I deal with that.

So back to grabbing opportunities. This Tuesday, I returned home after my classes ended and I received a call later on at night. I swear, my heart stopped and my blood froze when I picked up the call and realized what it was about. Apparently I was scheduled for an interview on that day. Wonderful. I have no idea how that happened, but my name was clearly on the Google Doc. where everyone signed up for an interview slot, but I am 100% sure I did not sign up for my time slot. I was not even aware sign ups were available. Luckily, I asked if there was any way for me to reschedule and they agreed to let me come in the next day at 7 p.m.

I think if this interview was for some other position, I would not have minded as much that I had already left a bad impression on my interviewers. However, I really wanted this position. I was interviewing for the position of editor-in-chief of the Cavalier, Sauder’s very own newspaper. Those of you who know me will know that I love writing. And reading. Within Sauder, this position seemed like the perfect way for me to get involved with something I loved! Sure, my chances were slim, but I still wanted to know that I actually tried. I was disappointed with what had happened, but I knew I still had my chance at my actual interview.

The next school day was the longest one ever. I felt butterflies in my stomach more than once. It honestly felt like it was butterfly migration season, and their final destination was my stomach. I was a bunch of nerves as I headed over to my interview. The interview itself? I stuttered, I stumbled over questions and I think my nervousness showed. I was pretty disappointed because I have been to several interviews for various positions this year and have been rejected in all of them. I was at the low point where I believe I probably would never get a place anywhere. I walked out feeling horrible. I sat at the student lounge for a while with some of friends, just being sad.

What happened next was amazing. Riley, one of my interviewers and the current editor-in-chief of the Cavalier, came out and started talking to some of my friends. I think I was the last interviewee of the day and all the interviewers were finally done with their long day. I was kind of huddled in a corner, too depressed to do anything. However, I did eventually end up walking over to him because I wanted to question why he decided to change the Cavalier so much during his time as editor. He answered me and I was listening, but I guess I was not paying as much attention as I thought I was. I heard one of my friends say “She totally did not hear him” and someone else say “Can’t believe she didn’t catch that…”. This all made me pause and go “Wait, what?” Then Riley goes “Uhh, yeah, so you got the position. Congratulations, you’re the new co-editor in chief of the Cavalier.”

This is kind of embarrassing, but I cried. I was so surprised, and happy and relieved—basically a whole bunch of positive emotions just rushing out. I think that was the happiest I have felt for a very long time. Sure, this will add to my workload next year, since I will be responsible for making sure the monthly issues come out on time, but HECK, it is something I would gladly do!

I think my takeaway from this experience is to never stop trying. Again, I was rejected numerous times throughout the year, but hey, that is how it is with everyone. At times you may end up getting something on your first try, but most of the time, you will have to try again and again. Just do not give up and keep on trooping!

I have my Frosh Leader interview tomorrow and am definitely feeling the nervousness I feel before every interview! At the same time, I am still pretty excited! To end this off, I hope my little story motivated some of you guys and pushes you to go out and try your luck! I am also very glad I got a chance to post again!

Till next time!

-Karen

P.s I think you should all check out the Cavalier. Especially when I start editing 🙂