Welcome to Don’t Give Up Your Day Job, a blog series where we will be asking our Stage & the City students a series of questions in order to find out more about their jobs. People often think that in order to attend one of the courses, they need to have a performing arts background or have an arts-related job, but that’s far from true. We want to show you that people from all walks of life can still enjoy the arts, it doesn’t matter if you work as a police officer or a marketing manager!
Please tell us a little bit about your day job: what is your position?
I’m a Client Relations Manager for a Financial Media company called Reorg Research. I’ve been in the position for over a year now and have been working in the Financial Services sector for about 7-8 years now. My main responsibilities are to manage and support our subscriber base across Europe, I provide demo’s, ensure that our users can connect with our experts, gather and process feedback and basically be the first port of call for any questions, queries, issues, complaints etc.
What made you want to choose that career?
I kinda rolled into it. I did European Studies and International Communications and ideally would have loved to have worked at an Embassy or Consulate, but those are notoriously hard to get into. Plus graduating during a financial crisis didn’t help either. I got offered a role in marketing at Ernst & Young and that is how I ended up where I am now. And I wouldn’t have it any other way, I really enjoy what do, I get to do what I like best and that is work with and talk to people. People think that Financial Services must be one big yawn fest, but its pretty interesting and there is always something happening.
What would you say is the hardest/most stressful part of your job?
The hardest part would probably be to try and ensure that I give all our clients the same amount of attention. I look after a client base of over 125 companies and sometimes that can make things very hectic and I do have to ensure that I check in with all of them on a regular basis. But at the same time, that also makes it interesting.
What made you decide to sign up for a course with us?
Several reasons to be honest! First off, I love performing and that is something I get to do at Stage & the City. Secondly, I love doing something creative, having something that allows me to just switch off and not think about anything except for what I’m doing at that moment.
How long have you been a student and what do you love the most about the course?
I’ve been with Stage & the City for about 2 years. I started with the City Singers course and then joined the Musical Theatre course, which I did for about 1 and a half years. I joined the Dance Company for a while as well and now I’m back to City Singers! I think one of my favourite things about Stage & the City is the relaxing and supportive environment, the emphasis is on having fun and that is exactly what I was looking for. Plus I’m a big fan of Anna Fiorentini and the hard work she puts into Stage & the City and the Fiorentini Foundation. I love that with Stage & the City, not only do I get to meet new people, have fun and perform but I also get to support Anna with her goals.
In what way(s) has the course benefited you? Has it improved your performance in the workplace?
I would definitely say that it has, as Client Relations Manager, it is my job to proactively reach out to people and build relationships with them. As I’m not the most extrovert person on the planet, I sometimes struggle with the networking aspect of my job. Through my courses, at Stage & the City, I’ve become more comfortable with stepping outside of my comfort zone and ‘to do’ instead of overthinking things to the tenth degree. And once you have managed to get up on stage in front of 200 people and belt out a solo, walking up to someone during a networking event is really not that scary anymore.
What effect has the course had on your confidence?
It has helped me in becoming more comfortable in trying things out by myself, to step outside of my comfort zone and know that it will be okay!