On the Ball… or Heels

by Julie on June 27, 2012

in Career

{Note from Julie: Charlene likes long walks on the {Edgewater} beach and enjoys {Clifton Martini Bar} cocktails. She is a semi-professional {Blondes vs. Brunettes} football player and hopes you enjoy this post. Eligible men can visit her blog, Life in the CLE.}

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While the lovely Julie is off enjoying the sun and sand, I’ll be here in Cleveland…working my little heart away (okay, I’m taking a half day on Friday for some Rascal Flatts fun). I work a lot. And I admit that. Some may even call me a workaholic (I wouldn’t personally). So when Julie asked me to guest blog, after throwing around some ideas, we landed on women & careers.

I work in the world of advertising, marketing and public relations. Which can be a male dominated career. It’s sometimes hard to describe my day to day job because it changes so often and goes from client to client to client. Yes, it’s a little bit like Mad Men (not quite that extreme and we don’t drink…that much). It’s a little like AMC’s The Pitch – which gives me anxiety because it’s too close to work life at times. And sometimes when friends or family ask what I do, it’s best to just show them a company website, TV commercial or print ad and say “I helped to execute THAT”.

It can be long hours. It takes extreme multi-tasking talents and extreme organizational skills. A lot of us on the account service side (aka – the non-graphic designers or copywriters) have serious Type A personalities, myself included. And for a woman in the industry, you sometimes have to really prove yourself. You have to walk in heels, carry that laptop and that Coach bag, talk on your office line while texting on your iPhone and get it all done before the client’s deadline.

For me, that’s often the fun in it. I strive on those moments. And enjoy the fact that I work on a very male dominated team (my previous agency, I was also one of the few females and working on a number of very male dominated products/accounts).

What advice do I have for young professionals out there? Don’t be afraid to work your ass off first and foremost. Like me, you will probably develop a Starbucks addiction along the way, but hey – it’s okay! Those long hours pay off in the long run. You learn a lot. And you get the chance to prove yourself. There’s nothing like getting in front of a room of people that are waiting to hear your bright idea and seeing head nods, saying “they got it”.

Along with that, know yourself well enough to know when you need a break. There are nights when I know I can physically, emotionally and intellectually not do any more. Those are the nights I enjoy a glass of Pinot, hang out with friends (Julie included!), work out a little longer than usual, chat with friends or just veg out. It’s easy to burn out in any career so a little TLC is always needed.

More than anything – know when to laugh. I work with an all male team and they keep me laughing almost every single day. And that is my sanity. Even when things feel like they are falling down around you – remind yourself…it’s just a job and just part of your day. It’s not your whole life (and shouldn’t be).

So to all you lovely ladies out there – get to work…

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Blog-The New Black June 27, 2012 at 12:38 pm

Woohoo! Go Charlene, I couldn’t have said it better myself. Reading it from your point of view makes me even more psyched to tackle the jobs we do!
Blog-The New Black´s last [type] ..All I Need is A Miracle

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Charlene June 28, 2012 at 3:28 pm

It’s crazy but crazy fun! (As I’m mentally preparing for an evening full of work)
Charlene´s last [type] ..Fondue and Fun

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