What's the best vacation you’ve ever taken? In the summer of 2012 I traveled to Europe with my three younger sisters. The trip started with three of us meeting the fourth sister in Italy where she was studying abroad. We toured through Florence, Rome and the beautiful cities that make up Cinque Terre. After Italy, we made our way to Spain where we stopped in Barcelona and the islands of Ibiza. Not only were the cities breathtaking, but the food and wine were amazing! We met a lot of really interesting people along the way, but I think what was most special was getting to make these memories together and surviving all the sisterly quarrels to tell the stories! If you haven’t been to either country, I recommend them both, however I will tell you the beaches of Ibiza are to die for!
How would you compare working in London to working here? While I was in grad school I had the opportunity to spend a summer in London working at a travel and tourism PR agency. Aside from getting used to everyone’s accents and how fast they seemed to be talking, the work itself was pretty comparable to the traditional PR work I had been doing in the states. But what stood out to me the most about working in London was the office culture. The agency I was at was small in size, but had a stellar client roster, so it felt bigger in terms of the caliber of work. What I loved about being in this kind of environment was the team camaraderie and how everyone jumped in to help on different accounts no matter what their normal role or position may have been. At that point in time I hadn’t experienced that before, so it was very cool to be a part of.
Everyone worked incredibly hard, but they were also BIG on taking time for themselves throughout the day or getting drinks after work. This was also a new phenomenon to me having come from years of experience in the entertainment world in LA where people don’t seem to ever stop working. I was forced to take my one-hour lunch everyday, meaning to leave the office even if I brought my food in. This took some convincing as it was such a foreign concept to me, but I learned what a difference it can make to change your scenery, even if it’s briefly. Walking around the nearby park or going to Starbucks (of course I sniffed out the closest Starbucks), became a regular part of my day and totally helped with my productivity and energy level. Oh yeah, I also had to learn to drink tea, a lot of tea.
Every Curator has at least one orange item. Which of your orange things is your favorite? If I’m being totally honest, I actually used to really dislike the color orange. Before the gasps come out, let me explain. I never thought it was a color that looked particularly good on me and I think I just hadn’t seen a shade I really liked. Oh yeah, and did I mention my car in high school was an orange Saturn Vue that had a license plate that read, “KRUSH?” But, after coming to Curator I realized hey, orange looks pretty good on a wall, and from there it began to grow on me and I realized it actually isn’t horrible to wear either. Now that I am an orange-convert I have started acquiring more and more orange things. I think right now, my favorite item would be my orange Kate Spade stud earrings. Thank you, Curator, for opening my eyes to a whole new orange world!
What major learnings did you take away from your previous career that you can apply to your job now? There are a lot of experiences both in school and in the real world that have shaped the way I work and approach things in my job today. When I started exploring career paths, I did what every college-aged girl in LA does: got an internship in entertainment PR (come on, we all watched The Hills, it looked awesome). The truth is, it is fun and exciting, however it is also exhausting and sometimes scary intense. After a few years of playing in that industry, I realized that those positions totally prepared me for more drama and crisis than I will probably ever see again. Working red carpet events, wrangling media, crazy fans, and dealing with lots of demanding individuals all while keeping a smile and my sanity has totally influenced the way I cope with people and high stress situations. Things happen, people can be difficult and plans may not always go as they’re intended, but I feel like I can handle pretty much anything that comes my way, and will be able to keep calm and collected doing so.
Another big takeaway from my pre-Curator life is the importance of relationship building. I’ve had the privilege of working with some really inspiring and well-respected individuals, and one common thing that I admire about all of them is their rapport with clients, colleagues, media and even mere acquaintances. Writing those thank you notes, remembering people’s names, really getting to know them and talking to them about things beyond the project at hand will always pay off, even if it’s not immediate.
What's one piece of advice you have for someone getting out of school or in the interview/job search process?
I have three pieces of advice:
- Be proactive. Show that you’re hungry; be willing to put in the time to meet as many people as you can and be open to all kinds of experiences. If you pigeonhole yourself right out of the gate you may miss out on something wonderful you didn’t think you would like or be good at.
- Be candid. Really look at your resume and cover letter; make sure that it is a reflection of who you are and what you’re capable of, not just what you’ve done.
- Be creative. My philosophy on job searching is that you have to be resourceful and creative because some companies don’t post job openings and a lot of businesses nowadays have the ‘black hole’ application process where you submit everything online and hope that someone receives it. Think about where you’d most want to work, the companies you like or the brands you admire. Find a contact and introduce yourself. You don’t even have to bring up job openings, think of it as a learning opportunity. I’ve personally had a lot of luck just reaching out to people and asking if I could pick their brain about the kind of work they do and asking them for tips because they’re where I wanted to be.
I'm always an open book, so feel free to holler at me anytime: @C_allodi