Wednesday, 21 January 2009


A few weeks ago I got a Twitter DM from a MN colleague, John Schneider giving me a heads up to a work experience opportunity at TBWA. I was really touched by that. I met John a few years back at a Marketing Conference. He was the first person that I gave my business card to and we've stayed in touch. He sent me this email and believe me he's a great creative thinker and a heck of a nice guy. Here's the email he sent me.

Hey Rhea,

It's absolutely no problem. I knew that you've been on the hunt via your updates on Twitter, and am always happy to pass on information that might be helpful to a contact of mine, we're all in this together after all. I hope the internship at TBWA turns out to be something that you want, and if so that you get it. As an MCAD grad you're too valuable to not be utilized by a good agency. Let me know if I can help in any other way and good luck.

Best regards,

I followed up with the link that he sent me and got in touch with Simon Law at TBWA and I had an interview the next day. Now, I don't and have never wanted to be an account planner. This was for planning experience, but I thought that it might be a way to get a foot in the door. One of the guys I had met with, Will, had nothing but wonderful things to say about him and knew him. Will is a planner at Lowe, who I met with before Christmas.

I was excited, it seemed like it might have been the chance I was looking for. I was also looking forward to meeting Simon and true to Will's word he was a nice guy. I spoke with him for a few minutes and then he brought in Toto Ellis to speak with me. I wasn't feeling very good about the interview at this point. It was hitting home that this wasn't a work experience that I even wanted and I am sure it showed, even though I tried to hide it. We had a chat about what I thought planning was about and my favorite ad campaigns at the moment. That was also a bad moment for me I totally blanked out, which is bad. I had done tons of research, but it all flew out the window. Not good during an interview. I left the interview feeling just, blah about the entire thing. I felt a bit bad that I had wasted their time, since I don't have any desire to be a planner.

I got the email the next day that they decided to go with someone else, a chap who was very keen. It makes sense, and it wasn't right for me. I am just trying to figure out what is right for me here and how to get a job doing it. I want to be an account manager so I should stick to that. Simon was kind enough to tell me that he was going to send my details to the Account Director, we shall see.

Every experience is bringing me closer to finding a job and this experience helped me to figure out what I don't want. I am happy for that. I also got to go back to TBWA, I really like that agency. It was inspiring.

I also had my first interview with a recruitment agency. I met with a woman from Blue Skies last week. I have zero experience using a recruitment agency so it was something new for me. I had attended an D & AD event and ended up chatting to a fellow who is a creative director at EHS Brann and his wife works for Blue Skies. There are a lot of recruitment agencies out here so it is always good to have a recommendation.

The interview went well. It's interesting seeing someone going through your CV and how they interpret your experiences. She said that there might be one role for me and I am waiting to hear back. Again I got the feedback that she wasn't quite sure how to market me. I am not your typical recent graduate. First off I am not 22 years old, I am 30. I have had significant internship experience where I was doing actual work. She told me that I am not at the very jr level, but at the same time I am not at an experienced level either. It's a bit frustrating. The position she was thinking of for me was a jr position, but with potential to move up quickly. That would be ok.

What I did take from it was that I definitely need to come up with a better strategy of what kind of job I want.


  1. I can only imagine how frustrating your job hunt can be. Sorry the TBWA lead didn't turn out to be the right one, but I'll continue to watch my network for others.

    I'm sure you have already considered this, but have you thought about targeting smaller agencies? Those may be less rigid in their profiles of prospects, and benefit from your "in-between" status.

    Regardless, rock on.


  2. I can totally relate to your last paragraph, although I don't have as much experience as you, I'll be coming out of Uni this Summer as a 26 year-old and a number of different experiences behind me. It's tough for the elevator pitch!

    Referencing what sanspotash said, I think smaller agencies / departments may definitely be the way forward in the long run. That way you can use your rich background all together in a valued role. But personally, I feel like I need to see 'how it's done' in a big environment first.

    I hope you can find something that will work for both you and an agency soon, we're all rooting for you!

  3. Thanks to both of you for your suggestions and support. I think you are both right about targeting smaller agencies. I will keep you posted of course.



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