Back in January I decided that it was time for a change, I guess you could call it a ‘new year, new me’ revelation. After a few years in retail I made the decision that I needed to do something that made me happy; I wanted to go into work feeling inspired, stimulated and I knew that working in the advertising arena is something that would help me achieve this. I’d previously gained experience working within the sector starting up a business straight out of university, so that coupled with my entrepreneurial nature meant that it was a step that I needed to take. So I handed in my notice and started to hunt for that opportunity to get my ‘foot in the door’.

It was a hugely nerve racking experience quitting my job in search of some experience that I hadn’t yet lined up. Fortunately I didn’t have to wait long, as a few emails later I had managed to line up an interview at SBW for a month long period of work experience. After meeting Simon and Richard I knew that this is where I wanted to be. Working in an office that has such open channels of communication; within a creative agency, is something that I had been looking for. The MD, Simon, was willing to give me the opportunity to get the experience, and as luck would have it, timing was on my side as there was going to be a position becoming available in the near future that was mine for the taking if I impressed. I am extremely grateful to have been given that opportunity, for Simon to take a risk on me, and it does in my eyes really show that he lives up to the philosophy of SBW, being ‘investors in people’.

I was not going to let this opportunity slip through my fingers so I jumped straight in, trying to soak up as much information as possible in that first week. I quickly understood that to be successful in a Account Handling role, being able to multitask was fundamental, it was all about honing my plate spinning ability. Not only was the work as stimulating as I had hoped for but all of my colleagues made me feel so welcome, meaning that first week flew by.

Within the second week I was fortunate enough to be invited to the ‘Bring a dish’/bowling event. This came at a perfect time as it allowed me to get to know people in the office that I don’t perhaps get to interact with on a day-to-day basis, all while tucking into the delicious food that everyone had conjured up. I must at this point give a special shout out to Lydia and her delicious meatballs. Who knew someone that had already admitted she is no culinary whiz could cook something that delicious! After everyone had gorged themselves on food we were treated to a spot of tenpin bowling. Now, in hindsight it perhaps wasn’t my strongest idea to bring out all of my bowling skillet and I usually wouldn’t recommend celebrating in the face of your line manager, but my competitive side came out. Fortunately for me Richard took it gracefully (even when I did use my left hand on the last bowl).

As the weeks went on I started becoming more hands on with the clients and future projects that were developing within the agency and I was loving every minute of it. One particular moment that stands out during the third week was putting a client meeting into my calendar for a date after my work experience was supposedly over. At this stage it was difficult not to get my hopes up at the prospect of being offered the chance to stay on, as either this was a good sign, or a very cruel joke. Luckily for me it was the former.

2016 has been a wonderful year for me so far as I am thoroughly enjoying my new role as an Account Handler, with it being everything and more than I had originally hoped for. I want to say a thank you to all my colleagues at SBW, as they have all made me feel so welcome in my first 3 months and for that I am extremely grateful. To finish I would like to offer one piece of advice to anyone reading this is, take that leap, it was the best choice I ever made.