‘Blogging is a great way to show your talents and interests to prospective employers’ – Lauren Conrad
In the same way, before I got married, I never referred to Dave as my finance (he went straight from boyfriend to husband) I never refer to myself as a ‘blogger’ – I simply say I write a blog. There are some words that don’t sit right in my mouth. The blogging issue is mainly because I always only did it as a hobby, it was never my main source of income (or any source of income for that matter – until Santander start accepting mortgage payments in prosecco!) and something that I did on the side.
Writing a blog has of course come with many, many positives. It’s the creative outlet I’ve been searching for for a long time and it feeds my need to be liked and accepted. I’ve had some amazing opportunities and worked with some fantastic brands like Coca Cola, The Inn Collection, Active Newcastle and Hotel Du Vin. Through these events I’ve met some people who I am genuinely proud to call friends like Cheish, Katie, Laura and Pixie. And I was even recognised at Wylam Brewery when someone approached me with her friend and said ‘oh my god you’re the prosecco girl!’ and hugged me so tightly I think she may have broken 2 of my ribs. That’s all incredibly cool for a girl with a B in GCSE Media Studies and who dropped out of A Level English because I was predicted a U.
Back in August though, my life changed drastically when I was offered a new job in business engagement, one of the main aspects of which would be producing new, original content. Granted it would be more writing business cases than reviews of the latest champagne bar but as someone who’s been a PA since they were 18 (i’m now 35) it is my absolute dream job. To be able to step away from a supporting role to be able to be more creative, managing my own workload and play a more active input into an organisation I’m incredibly passionate about. And it never would have happened if I didn’t write a blog.
You see, word got round at work that I wrote a blog, and off the back of that I was offered more creative work, albeit within the confines of my PA role. People I worked with who hated having to write creatively would ask me to check over their work, then before long they were asking me to draft things for them. Before you knew it I had quite a portfolio of relevant creative experience I was able to use in my interview and let me tell you, when I got the call (while I was in the bath no less) to say I got the job I was the happiest little clam on the planet.
I’ve been in the job two and a half months now and I’m absolutely loving it. No longer and I tied to my desk being the main point of call and I am trusted to manage my own time and workload. I get to travel regularly up and down to London and Eastbourne (which makes me feel very grown up and glamourous) and when I’m invited to meetings it’s because my opinion is needed; not just to sit quietly in the corner and take minutes.
Getting acquainted with Southern Rail, hotel breakfasts and late train home treats are just some of the perks of the new job…
It’s not been without it’s challenges of course. In a meeting in my first month I was asked to give an update on a strategy and I assumed it would be a short verbal update round a table to about 10 people. When I arrived it was a group of 40 and I had to stand up at the front, mic and all. I really should have taken the hint when I was asked to produce powerpoint slides! So that was a big shock and not something I’ve ever had to do in any job before. The travel, however glamourous, takes a lot out of you (the 7:04 train to London has become my fortnightly frienemy) and as most of my team are based in Eastbourne, I sometimes feel quite isolated on my own up in Newcastle.
I can’t grumble though because this change is something I’ve wanted and needed for a really long time now and I think it just goes to show that if you plug away at something, eventually your passion and enthusiasm shines through and new opportunities will be opened up to you. It sounds cheesy but I never even considered myself to be that good a writer, so believe me when I say if I can do it, anyone can!