Having left university with a degree which symbolised my coffee fuelled all-nighters and slapped together essays, I was excited at the prospect of entering the big-wide-world. As I chose a degree in History and Spanish, due to its varied career options, my career path took a different turn compared to those who chose more vocational courses.
Fast forward to a year later, I still had no idea what I was doing with my life, paralysed by the choices on offer. Suddenly, it felt as though I had to make life changing decisions right away. Do I follow the same career path as my parents (both lawyers), do I unleash my inner hippie and travel the world, do I apply for grad schemes, do I start my own business?
So, I followed my friends and joined the rat race, after a month of indiscriminately applying for jobs in London. I found myself in an open plan shabby-chic office, full of hipsters, vegan breakfasts and a selection of ethically sourced coffee pods. It was as if a millennial had thrown up on it. The supposed ethos of the company was a dedication to employee development and making a difference to the world. I thought this is it! After an intense presentation on how to market menopause products, I thought I have finally landed my dream marketing job, in a swanky fun agency.
Three months later, the dream had turned into a waking nightmare. I realised that the manager had mis-sold the job and I became a cold caller who sold space in a newspaper nobody even read. Employees were pitted against each other, and, I felt constant pressure to sell space to busy CEOs in order to reach targets. Having moved three times, unhappy in my job, feeling as though my writing skills and creativity were underutilised as I became a corporate robot, I decided it was not worth the stress and handed in my notice.
Since then, I have tried my hand in different areas, testing the waters, rather than throwing myself in the deep end. I have worked in the legal industry, typewriting letters (badly) for a highly strung Wills and probate lawyer; I have worked for an Asian TV network, dealing with the demands of wannabe Punjabi MC’s; I have developed the branding for start-up jewellery and mediation companies. I have freelanced, worked in photography, worked in a bar, acquired a TEFL qualification and a yoga teaching qualification, sat in at trials at the Old Bailey, blogged for glamping sites, logged stalled vehicle data on American roads . . .
Today my CV is either really impressive, or a representation of someone who doesn’t have their life together. Whilst I had many disappointing work experiences, I see each experience as a learning curve, which showed me what interested me – and what definitely did not.
Life at the farm
I am now undertaking work experience with the 8848 Agency, developing my writing skills within the PR department. Here I felt as though I can channel my creative and communication skills, whilst gaining an insight into stakeholder relations. The team have been so welcoming, and have really provided me with skills, tasks and experience to grow in the field. They are also providing me experience in social media and marketing. At 8848, I can obtain a diverse knowledge to take with me going forwards. I have had the opportunity to write blogs, press releases and undertake desk research for high profile clients.
It has been a pleasure to add this experience to my rather disjointed CV and I believe this is a vital part of my journey in finding a fulfilling career.
Finding the right career path is always difficult for graduates, but I believe it is important to try different routes whilst you’re young.
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