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Professional Jack

I went to a fun blogger event a couple of weeks ago, and I was asked one question that I found so interesting is: “What is your day job?” That got me thinking, maybe I should chit chat about what I do for a living on the blog. It might spur a column where I talk about myself more… because we all need more of that, right? riiiiight….

This post is part of an effort to be a little more thorough on LivingNimbly… Also, I think that this would be good for me in general to get down a couple of pages down on what the business side of my life looks right now as of Fall 2017 as a bit of a time capsule.

Photo Credit: Paul Markert

First off, I am seriously digging my current work situation, but I usually have a tough time articulating what I actually do. I’ve gotten a little too used used to saying: “I do communication work.” That says a whole lot of nothing… so I usually have to break it down.

My business card calls me a “Social Media and Marketing Strategist.” Fancy title right? I know, I wrote it! In a nutshell, I use communication strategy to build brands and foster relationships.

Reader at home: “Jack, I’m still confused. How did you get into this kind of role? Do people actually pay you for this? What do you mean relationships? Like online dating? What are you talking about?”

Let’s start a couple of years ago… In college, I studied Public Communication, which, for me, provided me with a holistic view of public relations as well as a firm understanding of a bunch of different communication and marketing strategies/tactics. During my time at American University in Washington, D.C., I took all of those strategies and put them into action with local businesses from managing the social media presence of a family owned chain of olive oil stores to crafting E-Newsletters for a craft liquor distributor. I also worked on planning and implementing events in the city for my university and the John F. Kennedy Center for Performing Arts.

You may be wondering why I was jumping around so much in my roles and responsibilities. Well, there was a common thread that tied all of these experiences together: using communication to build and strengthen community, whether it was within a group of university students or olive oil lovers.

Photo Credit: Andy Lalwani

Okay, flash forward to now! I’ve continued this trend of working with communities in my post graduate work. Let my give a little breakdown of what I do now that I relocated to the Twin Cities:

General Mills Big G Cereal. I am a communication contractor on the influencer marketing team. I work with online influencers and bloggers in to promote General Mills Big G Cereal. I build relationships with these influencers online and at in-person events. Day to day, I create mailers to be sent out to our friends and plan/execute cereal-filled events. I also have the best coworkers, which is a GIANT cherry on top!

What is super cool and something that I didn’t expect to love that much is that I am a part-time employee. I work an average of 25 hours a week. During busy weeks (like earlier this month) I hit and exceed 40 hours a week. When I am traveling, diving into a new freelance project, enjoying a little R&R, I may dip down to around a dozen hours.

Straight out of college, I felt this immense pressure to get a full time job, but I am so grateful that I ended up where I did. I am provided with the flexibility to pursue other endeavors, feeding my entrepreneurial spirit in addition to working in a corporate setting.

Photo Credit: Paul Markert

Freelance Communication Work. I also work with a variety of small businesses to craft their brands through a variety of tactics. I manage social media accounts, write press releases, craft strategic communication plans, and take the lead on other tasks to help my clients shape their businesses. It keeps my weeks varied and ever-changing. Sometimes, I am even do speaking engagements.

LivingNimbly (duh, you are already here). My latest endeavor, which is a true exercise for me in community building for my own personal brand. Especially moving to a new city, it has been great to start to find community of writers and creators here. Added bonus, having a blog means that I am writing on several different platforms on any given day, keeping my writing up to snuff!

Eventually, I may find a way to push this from a hobby into something more profitable. But for right now, the time I am setting aside for self-exploration, networking, and creativity is so worthwhile.

Photo Credit: Paul Markert

So that’s an overview of the work I do, but what does that actually look like on a day to day level. Well… I spend a lot of time working on my laptop in coffee shops. I write all of the time. I am a small business owner. I am always tracking down my corporate ID badge. I juggle multiple timelines and clients on a weekly basis. I have busy weeks. I have slow weeks. I send out invoices and checks usually come back. It’s definitely a mixed bag, but it provides me with a lifestyle that I’m enjoying!!

If you are interested in connecting and/or doing business together, just give me a shout on the blog or message me on LinkedIn.

Edit: I completely forgot to include this amazing picture by my wonderful coworker, Kim Harbinson. 🙂

Photo Credit: Kim Harbinson

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