Friday, June 6, 2008

Looking Back, and Moving On

I am going to begin this blog post by sharing a little disclaimer about myself: I'm not good with good-byes. I never have been. Not when I moved to Oregon. Not when I graduated high school. And not when I left my cozy life in Eugene to make it in the big kid world. This may have been part of the reason why this decision was such a hard one to make.

But I have come to realize throughout the years that change is a good thing (as Obama would say.) Which now, brings me to the good news: I have made a big decision in my life; a big change - to leave my job at Waggener Edstrom and move to the foreign land of Los Angeles. For me, this decision was bitter sweet. Waggener was the perfect job in every regard. I liked what I did, the benefits were great, and I worked with so many intelligent, friendly, supportive people. I loved going to work each day... but I needed something more. Well, maybe not more; but different.

Rewind. I'll catch all you irregular readers up from the beginning. I graduated college nearly one year ago (so hard to believe it has already been a year!) and began an internship with Waggener Edstrom Worldwide, a medium-sized international PR agency based in Portland and Bellevue, 2 days after I graduated. I never thought I would like tech. PR, but in my nearly one year's time at Waggener I learned to love it. I worked on the online services business and was hired on full time 3 months later as an AC of Analyst Relations for OSB (what's AR you ask? I'll explain later :)). I worked there for nearly a year and have grown so much as a PR (and AR) professional in that short amount of time.

Well, today was my last day at Waggener; needless to say I am going to miss it. But I am also so excited for my life ahead in LA. It takes a lot to up and move away from everything you've ever known, no job in hand and absolutely no plan, but I am so proud of myself for taking the first step. During my time at WaggEd, I've learned several things:
  • Starting out at a PR agency is one of the best routes a young PR professional can take
  • Not too big, not too small; medium-sized agencies are just right
  • "Publicly-held" does not mean better. In fact, I'd argue the opposite
  • It is important to find an internship where you are more than just the 'copy girl'
  • But it is also important to realize that you still have a lot to learn
  • Vacation days are there for a reason
  • If you take the time to plot out your goals, any respectable manager will listen; and advocate
  • Coffee twice a day does not necessarily mean you need it
  • You don't always have to love your product; you just have to pretend to like it more than the enemy
  • To do lits and outlook calendars are money
  • Speaking of money...
  • Google is always the enemy
  • It's good to take advantage of professional development opportunities
  • If you ask your mom what her current ETA is, she will laugh at you
  • Whoever said 'if you don't start drinking coffee in college, you never will' is a LIAR
  • There IS a such thing as work-life balance
  • Change = opportunity

So now, the advice part (because what would a blog post be without a few words of wisdom?) Life is short. Figure out what you want to do, and find a way to get there. But it's okay to take your time. Hmm... That's all I got for now.

I'd like to share a quote from a quote book a colleague gave me before I left: "I have always wanted an adventurous life. It took a long time to realize that I was the only one who could make an adventurous life happen to me" - Richard Bach. So, to end this novel of a post - here's to all that I have left behind, and all that I have to look forward to as I pick out a new color and begin writing the next chapter of my life.

(and yes, I WILL post any and all celebrity sightings from here on out!! Check out my new blog soon; it's still a work in progress :))


Anonymous said...

Have fun traveling. Take a lot of pictures. Take advantage of these times, because they are now much fewer and farther between. You better love Prague.

Tiffany Derville said...

Congratulations on taking the next step in your career. Enjoy sunny LA!