Advice 1: Kristi moved from working at a brand agency to the client side, which is viewed by many as a tricky move to make. She discussed several pieces of advice she would give to someone looking to make the same transition, or more generally, transition to another job: 1. Drawing on relationships that have been built up over the course of your career is important – this will help to get you to get a meeting with the target company. 2. Speaking to people in the team you want to work in or at the very least the company you want to work for will help you to look beyond the job spec and to unpick and visualise exactly what the job will look like. 3. Do not undersell yourself just because you don’t have exactly the experience required for the role. You absolutely have transferable skills if you’ve worked on the agency side and you may bring something to the role that someone that has come up vertically through the organisation may not.
Advice 2: Kristi thinks that a key quality for someone to have to be very successful in her field is the ability to add structure to the madness that sometimes results from many creative individuals working together. Managing to keep sight of the purpose and the business case in the midst of many different ideas coming through many different channels is crucial. Some say the best creativity comes from really tight parameters, for example, if you were asked to invent a new way of speaking to somebody only using things currently found in your house, that might result in a very unexpected, creative outcome.
Advice 3: Taking a career break and working on other projects was a great and a helpful experience. Kristi did not necessarily recommend for others to take a career break, but spoke of her own experience as a time to learn and build other skills and confidence. During her time off, among other things, Kristi built an agri-tech app with her husband, which taught her more about sales and interviewing the users of their product to find a solution to truly meet their needs. Having this new set of skills gave her the confidence to subsequently look for client-side marketing roles.
Details of experience: Kristi started out on a graduate programme at a large marketing firm, where she got experience working at 5 different marketing agencies. She then left the large marketing and media group and worked at several of its agencies, focussing on brand strategy. After this, she spent some time off from working for marketing agencies and built an agri-tech app together with her husband and completed night courses at General Assembly, including a UX design course. Now Kristi is back in the UK, working as a brand and campaign manager for a UK house move platform.
What the job is really like: the roles Kristi has held in brand and marketing to date have been incredibly people focussed. The importance of the people side has increased over time, because of the nature of the jobs that Kristi has held and/or at the very least in Kristi’s estimation of its importance. In her current role as a brand and campaign manager, on a typical day, Kristi could be coordinating internal marketing teams, planning long-term marketing strategies, managing budgets and engaging in legal contract negotiations, managing media and creative agencies or working on a campaign, ensuring that the timing and the messaging is exactly right for the brand and business strategy.
This post is written by Experience Share, based on their interview with Kristi Rennie on 25/10/2020 and has been approved by Kristi. To listen to the full podcast and to hear much more about Kristi’s experiences and her advice first hand, tune in on Spotify: link or Apple Podcasts: link