Career Wisdom 4 You Series Mission: To serve invaluable insider-wisdom to college students across the globe as they work towards having an impactful & healthy career.
Featured Guest For Wisdom Session #4: Crystal McDuffy, Associate Product Marketing Manager at Google, Did internships with both Twitter and Google.
(Disclaimer: The expressed opinions below are solely Crystal McDuffy’s and not of Google or her past employers.)
Question 1: What do you enjoy most about your current role & career overall?
I really enjoy the variety that exists in my work. While some challenges are more difficult than I expected, working in marketing is never boring. It doesn’t matter if you’re in the tech industry, sports industry, or any other industry, marketing is always there! I love how versatile it is, and how I’m always thinking about people during my work.
Question 2: How should students best maximize their internships?
Students should best maximize their internships by getting connected to as many people around them as possible. Of course you want to be professional — be on time, be prepared, and always provide solutions — but the real value of every place you work is the connections. Make sure you’re going to as many events as possible and don’t be afraid to put yourself out there! Even if you don’t end up working full-time at the company, you’ll definitely see the people you worked with again. Make sure you have a good relationship!
Question 3: What skills and personal characteristics do you feel contribute most to success in your industry?
I would say having a “bias to action” is the most important skill you can have in any industry right now. The world is filled with so much information and it’s easy to get overwhelmed by overthinking your plans and never actually doing the work. Even if it’s mediocre your first time around, you can only improve what exists! So if you’re an entry-level professional especially — do the work and share it. The opportunities will come, and people will be more than vocal with their feedback.
Question 4: What are the biggest early-career mistakes to avoid?
The biggest early-career mistakes to avoid would be: underestimating your contributions because you’re just an entry-level employee. The company hired you for a reason! Bring your big ideas to the table. Another mistake would be burning bridges. Just don’t do it. Find friends to vent to. Do not let anger get the best of you at work, people will never forget it. The last, and probably most important mistake is being afraid to take risks. You are young. Now is the time to: move to another city or country, go to events even if your friends aren’t going, and put yourself out there! The worst thing that can happen is someone says no.
Bonus Wisdom: What final piece of advice do you have for students?
Try new things now. Don’t be afraid to get out of your comfort zone. If you’re looking for a sign to try that thing that’s been in the back of your head for a few weeks, but you’re scared of what people think… here is the sign. Try it!!