I was headhunted by a recently established company early on in July, to take on the responsibility of being a Digital Media Manager. Apparently my prowess in social media is memorable enough to warrant an offer. I had an interview, and got the job. It had been educational, enlightening and rewarding.Seeing my name in the credits reel after the show had me feeling so plush!
I deduced that given the company’s current preoccupation with settling in, their shows integration into prime-time television, and the upcoming release of another show, I would not be able to, in time, offer the company the entirety of what they required from a Digital Media Manager.
Since my recruitment, and subsequent employment, I made it clear that my education remains paramount in my priorities. I am currently in the final stages of my postgraduate university career, nearing the end of my thesis research. Through personal accountability, I conceded I had been so invested in this job, that I had lost sight of my initial goals – centered on academia. I realized that I am unable to multi-task to such an extent.
I voiced out that I could simply strive to learn faster and refine my talents in social media through trial and error, but I have an elementary understanding of the prerequisites that govern corporate digital media.
So here is a list of things I learned having freelanced for 2 months:
- Always get a comprehensive outline of what your job title is, and what it entails.
This is a good way to keep guiding you through every your day-to-day tasks. I realized half of the feelings of failure or “amatuerishness” came from waddling by playing guessing games as to what is required. I re-structured what I believed to be the job they wanted of me, and included my talents in editing to make me an indispensible team member.
- Establish and maintain a good rapport with everyone you work with.
When dealing with the television industry I realized you have to smooth alot of easily ruffled feathers. You have to always be attentive to client requirements because Sponsors usually pay most of the bills. Constant communication, not only with your project manager, but all the bosses and business personnel is warranted because EVERYONE’S jobs are linked in this domain.
- Make your grievances heard.
Working in an unknown domain made something manifest in my behavior that utterly shocked me – I was so subdued and wary of voicing my opinions. Sounds crazy right? I usually state with outright certainty, that I love networking, and I’m generally considered a talkative being. However, I guess insecurities of the unknown played a huge part. Also, its hard finding your footing among people who have worked together for years, and established their own rapport. It’s isolating in a sense.
- As time progresses, make a note of your own personal skill development.
This is important for the future when you’re scouring for other jobs. Taking the time to evaluate yourself and your development means that if anyone asks you, or you simply wish to articulate the extent of your qualification, it’s easier to draw on that.
- Lastly, be meticulous when it comes to contract signing and be uncompromising when it comes to the timing of salary payments.
This was a huge problem for me. I get that glitches in the system happen. However, delayed payments with insubstantial justifications is intolerable. Businesses are aware of the requirements necessary to properly function – paying people for work they do is part of it. You are your own asset – you are a good and you provide a service. This means that your livelihood is dependant on your talents and skills, and the system in place of exchanging the use of those for money. I was not emphatic enough when I was given an excuse as to why everyone else had been paid, and yet I was not yet. I had to remind and continuously practically beg to get what was rightfully owed to me.
So with whatever you do: either get your money upfront or make sure you make an arrangement you are comfortable with.
There’s alot more where this came from, but beyond anything, I’d just like to take the time to say what a great experience this freelance job was.
I’m forever indebted to the man who took the time to consider me worthy of the job and headhunted me. He’s a truly top bloke.
Here’s to hoping the many jobs and internships I’m applying for abroad will yield something substantial.
I’m dying to see what I can do in an entirely different setting!