Okay, so it's been a while since I've checked in with my blog. Don't worry, I've been doing a ton behind the scenes, and this place will be hopping in no time. The Happy Arkansan is my baby, and I fully intend to keep it going. I've been doing a lot and trying to keep you updated on Instagram, so follow me on Instagram for the latest and greatest. Today, I wanted to give an update of sorts about my new job, what I've been up to, and what's happening with the blog moving forward.
I Got A New Job
First and foremost, I got a new job! If you didn't know, when I finished graduate school in 2017, I took a year to freelance and blog on my own. One year, turned into two years, and it almost turned into three years. These last few years got away from me, but I am excited about the next phase in my career. On May 12, I started my new job as a marketing coordinator and content writer for WorkBright!
If you didn't know, I've been freelancing for HR technology companies for a while. I found my first HR technology company in 2017, and I fell in love with the industry. Since then, I've written for companies like Bonusly, The Muse, and Lattice. WorkBright was one of the first HR technology companies I cold pitched in October of 2018.
Due to all of the COVID-19 craziness, I was putting more effort than usual into the work I did with WorkBright. Even before I became a full-time employee, I cared about their brand, and I wanted to ensure that they had amazing, relevant content on their blog. This hard work was noticed in April because I got a message from my client turned coworker introducing me to his manager.
In a matter of weeks, I went from freelancing to starting my full-time job at the company. I couldn't have asked for a better experience. I get to live where I want to live and connect with amazing colleagues who surprise and challenge me every day. I am also learning a ton! I'm not freelancing as much right now, but I am starting to see freelancing from both perspectives now, and it's incredible.
My First Month At WorkBright
So, you probably want to know more about my first month and a half at the company. Here's a little peek at what I've been doing:
Getting To Know The Company And My Cohort
For the first few weeks of my new job, I spent a lot of time getting to know my new job, colleagues, and cohort. I started my first week of onboarding on May 12th. First, we had a more general onboarding week. Then, our next week was department-specific. One of my favorite parts of the onboarding process were the coffee dates my manager set up for the cohort. Each day, we'd meet on Zoom and chat with a member of the team. It helped me get to know everyone and the people in my cohort. We had our last coffee date on June 10th, and it was a bittersweet experience.
Working for an onboarding company means that I was excited about what the onboarding experience would be like. Overall, I think I had a great onboarding experience, given all the craziness happening right now. Most employees for the company I work for are based in Colorado, so they were testing the remote onboarding experience on us. I am impressed with how they were able to pivot and create a stellar experience for all the people in my cohort.
Learning All Sorts Of New Skills
So. I've been learning a ton of skills since I started my new job.
If we are talking about non-work skills, I've been learning how to make smoothies. My smoothie obsession began when I got to work on a Splendid Spoon review a few weeks back. I decided to buy a Nutribullet and start making my own blends. I love adding Spring mix or Kale as my green of choice. For fruit, I usually buy a big bag of frozen mixed fruit, so each smoothie tastes slightly different. I was pretty proud of the smoothie I am sharing here because it was so green and just the right blend for me. (If you don't like a bit of chunkiness in your smoothies, we can't be friends!)
If we are talking about work skills, I can't believe how much I've grown over the last few weeks. I'm getting better at Salesforce, writing sales emails, and tooting my own horn. I will say that the art of bragging has probably been the hardest for me. I'm an introvert who is used to working on my own as a freelancer. Starting a 9-5 and working across departments has been a massive transition for me. I don't have to do things on my own anymore, and I have plenty of people to cheer me on, but that isn't always easy to remember.
Trying To Balance Work And Play During A Pandemic
Working remotely has posed more challenges than I thought. Balancing a remote job with the blog, podcast, and my freelancing career has not been easy. Adding a 40-hour a week salaried position into the mix with all my other random projects has proved pretty challenging. I have not been the best at balancing it all, but I'm getting better every day.
One of the things I know I will need to get better at is protecting the time I do have to spend on the blog and using it well. Instead of lollygagging after work, I have to start putting my head down and focusing on the task at hand. I'm giving a shoutout to all millennial busy bodies who did this all before me!
What's Happening Next On The Happy Arkansan
So, with my new job and all my other endeavors, you might be wondering where that leaves The Happy Arkansan. Like I said, The Happy Arkansan is my baby, and I have no intention of leaving you all high and dry. I am going to be publishing content on the blog, and I hired a freelance writer to help me publish fantastic content on the blog!
I met Savanna a few years back when she worked at Potential Magazine. I am so excited about hiring my first writer to help me produce stellar content for the blog. She'll be contributing weekly content to the blog to help everything get back on pace. I will be adding content at least twice a month to keep my byline alive as well.
If you want to keep up with Savanna, check her out on Instagram, and let her know that you are excited to see her work on The Happy Arkansan!