When I was a toddler, my mother would always give the same response to friends and family when they asked what I'd want for my birthday:
“Balls and books.”
Honestly, my core hobbies haven't changed all that much since then. I'm an avid reader, covering both literature and the 24/7 news cycle of the Internet -- especially if it concerns sports and the culture surrounding them.
I graduated from the University of Southern California (and applied for countless scholarships and soul-crushing loans to do so) because of the opportunity the Annenberg School of Journalism presented as a fulcrum of media. The skills I cultivated there prepared me for the most formative experience of my career: building the editorial team at Graphiq, a tech company that specializes in data visualization.
In my two years at Graphiq, our editorial team grew from four members to 14, not including audience development and distribution teams that were devoted to attracting eyeballs to our stories. I helped shape our sports vertical from an afterthought in the company to one of our strongest domains, doing everything from thinking of the site’s name (PointAfter) to establishing regular publication partnerships with Sports Illustrated, Yahoo Sports and NBA.com. Most importantly, I learned about the landscape of digital content economies and the work ethic it takes to build an integral department of a startup from (almost) nothing.
Ready for a change now, I look forward to drawing on my previous experience to contribute new ideas, energy and whatever else is needed for a new organization.
Many of the traits I exhibit as a journalist also translate well to recruiting, a role I actively sought out at Graphiq and greatly enjoyed. The fields overlap the art of interviewing, a sense of curiosity, the ability to complete individual tasks quickly with little supervision, a knack for connecting with different types of people and an investigative, detail-oriented focus towards research.
If there's anything to take away from this, it's that I'm a very optimistic, adaptable, hard-working person. I'll be happy as long as my work lets me use my writing, communication and researching skills -- hopefully for a tight-knit team. And you can bet that once I've found my next opportunity, I'll do everything I can to help us succeed.