This month, we welcome work experience student Paige Catton to Scriba HQ. She’ll be joining us as a part-time PR assistant in the weeks running up to Christmas. So, because we thought you might like to know a little more about our newest team member, we’ve quizzed her in this short Q&A…
Which University do you go to and what degree are you studying? Why did you choose this course?
I am currently studying English Language and Literature at the University of Leeds. I chose to study this because, at school, English was one of the lessons I excelled in and actually enjoyed. I like the power language gives you in expressing yourself and your ideas. I wanted to take this a step further by advancing my understanding of the language we speak and use every day. I believe good English skills are an important trait for everyone to have and to be truthful I didn’t know what career I wanted to go into after university. I thought English would be a sought after skill which would open many doors and allow me to keep my options open.
What intrigues you about a career in PR and marketing?
I am someone that can get bored of undertaking the same tasks every day, but PR and marketing is the first thing that has truly grabbed my attention and kept hold of it. The idea that I will be working with different people every day, building relationships and networks is something that excites me. There is also a real sense of pride seeing a press release or a blog used online and saying ‘I wrote that’. Everything about a career in PR and marketing intrigues me because I don’t have much knowledge about the industry and Scriba is giving me the opportunity to find out more.
What three skills do you think you need to excel in marketing?
- Creativity and expression of ideas – I believe this is a key skill to do well in this industry. At times it involves creative writing, like producing blogs, so you need to be clever with your linguistic choices to engage and attract as many readers as possible. Being able to express your ideas clearly and effectively is very important because you have an online audience so they all need to understand your message.
- Good writing skills – You may be very good at expressing your ideas aloud, but if you’re unable to put them into words your ideas may not be heard.
- Teamwork – I have realised during my time at other marketing/PR companies that they are working with multiple clients every day. They are in constant contact with clients, creating content for them, meaning teamwork is essential. Ultimately you want a happy client, so you need to listen and work with them. Most importantly, teamwork is key within the office because you may be required to work together on the same task for a client.
If you could interview one person for a feature, who would it be and why?
This would be impossible to do now, but one of the people I find most inspirational is Martin Luther King Jr. I would love to interview him to understand where his confidence, courage and power stemmed from. I studied his ‘I Have a Dream’ speech at school, unpicking his wonderfully crafted linguistic choices, and it is always something that has stuck with me. It is amazing that one man could change and influence the dominating thoughts of the time by simply using language to express his ideas and beliefs. This one man created a pivotal moment in history, which has shaped the society we live in today.
Describe yourself in five words
- Competitive (extremely),
- Funny (always),
- Organised (maybe sometimes a little too much).
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
In my spare time I love to take my competitive streak to the netball court and play my favourite sport with my friends. Luckily, so far, we are undefeated so I haven’t had to lose my cool. I also love reading. At the moment all the books I read are for university so I am looking forward to picking up a book that I have chosen to read. Going to the gym is something else I really enjoy doing in my spare time. It allows me to burn off some steam (and the food I’ve eaten) and it makes me feel good about myself afterwards, which is very important.
Which one word would you use to describe Scriba?
Stimulating. From the moment that I arrived at Scriba, the team was so welcoming and warming that I was instantly excited and engaged with the work that they do. The busy little office constantly has things going on and you can’t help but be a part of the topics they are discussing, and the work that they are doing. Katie, Louise and Amy clearly love what they do and it definitely rubs off onto you!
What do you hope to get out of your work experience here?
I want to gain an understanding of what PR and marketing consists of. I hope to gain some knowledge of day to day life working for a PR company. Broadening my experience of working within this field will hopefully help me find a job after university, whilst getting me ready for working life. Most of all I want to utilise the skills I have gathered from studying English at university and put them to good use helping the Scriba team.
What advice would you give to other students your age, when it comes to planning the next steps of their career?
I know a lot of people, even in their last year at university, are still unsure about what they want to do after they’ve finished. My advice is, if you haven’t already done so, get some work experience in a potential career choice for you. Even if you’re not being paid for it, it is well worth your time to do it. This way once you’ve tried it out you will know whether it is a career you may or may not want to go into. If it is, then great, you have some work experience for your CV. However, if you realise it isn’t then you can try something else, until you find the right thing for you.
Also if you’re doing a course at university and you think it may not directly link with a particular career that you’re considering, the majority of the time it doesn’t matter – don’t let this stop you striving for the career that you want. If you have the skills and drive that are required for that job, whether your degree says you have or not, you will most likely end up in that field.