No job is a waste of your time: the skills you learn along the way

In the 17(!) years I have been working I have had many, many jobs. For the purposes of this post, I will list them.

  • Avon lady
  • Weavers Café Saturday girl
  • Debenhams Sales Advisor
  • Debenhams Supervisor
  • WH Smith Sales Assistant
  • Libra/ Jenners Sales Assistant
  • Waitrose shelf stacker
  • University of Dundee jobs
    • IT Receptionist
    • IT Clerical Assistant
    • IT Communication and Information Assistant
    • Innovation Portal Marketing Assistant
    • Dundee Clinical Academic Track Administrative Co-ordinator
    • IT Communication & Information Officer
  • Time Lifestyle Boutique Founder & Director
  • Discovery Credit Union Marketing & Communication Officer
  • The Circle Facilities & Services Development Manager

Alongside the first half of this list, I accumulated qualifications: Standard Grades, Highers, Advanced Highers and an Honours Degree in Biological Sciences.

Let me start with the conclusion, that each of those experiences has shaped who I am today. I have experience, skills and knowledge that I use every day that I started accumulating a very long time ago.

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Thinking about blogging for your business? Eight things to consider before starting your business blog

Most businesses are at least on board with having a website now. Some will run their whole operation via a website. Others will use it as a place to find the address and contact details with maybe a brief description of what they do. I use business websites a lot in my work – I ran my website in my own business; when I was targeting some partner businesses in my last role I would research them beforehand; and as a buyer in retail,  I used them to find suppliers. Websites I commonly encounter usually have a home page, about page, contact page and some sort of services page. There may also be a link to a Facebook or Twitter presence. Frequently now, though, we are seeing blogs on websites.

For this reason alone, other people are doing it; people are bolting on a blog to their website with some vague notion they will write the occasional article about their business. Your nephew might have told you, you need a blog. Your friends who know something about marketing all have blogs and you have heard that some businesses even have blogs that create their own revenue stream.

You think it’s worth a shot and send an email off to the web guy or girl to add a blog to the website or think about signing up to one of the many blog platforms and ‘have a go’. But before you do, I ask you to think about these points.

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Next stop – The Circle

It wasn’t so long ago I wrote about preparing for an interview and a new job. A little over two months, in fact. But here I am, ready to start again. I have been offered the most wonderful opportunity to make a big difference to communities in Dundee and I am really excited about taking it. I am going to work for Circle Scotland CIC, or more informally, The Circle.

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Is The Content Marketing Academy a cult? The truth about trust and service

You might have heard me talk about The Content Marketing Academy conference recently. I have been helping to get the word out about it. I might have said it’s the most important business event in Scotland. I may have even said that if you’re serious about communicating with your customers you owe it to them. That was all true. It might have felt a bit preachy, though. You could have been wondering, why should I trust you? Especially when it seems I am possessed by some kind of cult.

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Stop bitching about Facebook – how to create content people want to see and share

I know how hard it is to build Facebook reach for a business page. It’s something I have worked very hard on in the past. Like most things worth having, it’s right that it’s difficult and it’s right that you have to do a good job to get results. If it was easy then everyone would be doing it and how would you stand out from your competition?

Understanding how media companies work

Facebook offers a huge opportunity to reach an audience with no cost to entry. For FREE you can start a business page, share content and reach people based on their age, gender, geography, and interests. Facebook, however, is a business. It has to pay salaries and create a profit for its shareholders. Just like yours. It also has a duty to its members to serve content that they find interesting. This is why they regularly change things. Facebook want to offer a better experience to its members, keep members logging in and to encourage interactions. Otherwise, they have no platform at all.

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Ten reasons why I’m going to #TCMA2016 conference in Edinburgh

On the 2nd and 3rd June, I will be hanging out at The Content Marketing Academy in Edinburgh. For me – this is the most important business event I will attend this year. More so than trade shows, industry-specific conferences, local conferences and networking events. I am really excited about the next few weeks as the build-up gets going and we all assemble in Edinburgh. In this blog post, I want to share WHY it’s such a key event for me.

In the spirit of full disclosure, I am helping Chris Marr, the founder, organise a few elements of the event. I had bought my ticket long before I offered to do that. It’s an event that I believe holds value for anyone trying to communicate with an audience.

1. I believe in content marketing

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Ten things to do before starting a new job

You got the job. You negotiated your salary. You have a start date and you are looking forward to the new role. What should you be doing before you start a new job? For me, I will be spending my last week off getting organised and planning a sensible routine for new job. I also have some preparation to do.

1.     Stay in touch with your new employer

It might take a little time to check references, a contract issued and arrangements made so you may not start immediately. Do try and stay in touch with your new employer. Check if you can help chase up references. Ask if you can pop in and say hello before the start date. Your new colleagues will be curious to see you too. This will help with tip two.

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