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10 of the smartest things I did in the first 10 years of my career that helped me become successful

Published by Business Insider on Fri, 10 Aug 2018


Not everyone gets to say that they genuinely love their job, but I am lucky enough to be able to do so. As a freelance writer and a former editor for a womens lifestyles website, I get to write about topics that interest me, work from the comfort of my own home, go to cool events in New York City, test out new beauty and tech products on a regular basis, work with amazing people, and even sometimes travel to incredible locations. Being a member of the press obviously comes with a lot of wonderful perks, and these can often cause people to believe that my job is easy. While I certainly wouldnt say that its rocket science, I also wouldnt call it simple. In a typical day, Ill write anywhere from six to 10 stories for the various nine websites that I work for and do all this on a deadline.The daily work, however, doesnt really compare to the struggle it took me to get to the position I'm in today. Being hired as a full-time editor for a womens lifestyle website in New York City is hard. The field is extremely competitive, and as the journalism world overall dwindles in size, job openings have become less and less frequent. I get a lot of questions about my job from everyone: how I got hired as an editor, how I continue to get work as a freelance writer, how I am able to get all of the perks that I get, and how I manage everything on my own. The short answer' Its not easy, and it requires a lot of dedication. The long answer' There were some pretty smart things I did in the first 10 years of my career, and while some are specific to this job, others canand shouldbe done by everyone. I always made it a point to be nice to everyone I met.While I've met a ton of really awesome people in this industry, I've also, unfortunately, had my fair share of "Devil Wears Prada" moments. Still, I always kept one thing in mind: the fact that every industry, no matter how large, is smaller than it seems. This is especially true for New York media, where it often seems that everyone knows everyone. From the day I began as an intern up until now, I have tried to be as polite, respectful, and kind to everyone I work with or meet. It's paid off: I've made some great friends, I've learned how to network.I took on multiple internships as I looked for full-time positions.In college, I knew exactly what I wanted to do: be an editor for a women's magazine or website. I also knew that the competitive magazine world required at least one internship on your resume. I saw these as an opportunity, and I took them seriously.I started with an editorial internship where I worked for school credit while still in college. When I graduated college, I hoped to get a full-time job, but I was sending my resume out everywhere and hearing nothing. So, instead of giving up, I pursued more internships. I eventually completed an eight-month internship, then a nine-month internship before I was able to find a full-time job. Without these internships, I wouldn't have gotten the full-time editor position I ended up getting. The experience and networking I gained from all of my internships were what helped me get where I am today. I strongly suggest being open to as many internships as you need before giving up. I went to almost every event I was invited to and learned how to network.As a shy, somewhat awkward person, I always dreaded networking. Unfortunately, it's necessary in most fields, especially in the New York media world. I had to force myself to be a little more social, especially in the beginning of my career. In the end, it paid offmany of the connections I made at brand events and parties helped me down the road when I needed new positions. See the rest of the story at Business Insider
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