As the summer of 2017 quickly approached, like most other college students, I was scrambling to find summer work. I decided to send out my resume to several respected companies in the Louisville area, and wait to see what would happen. Days before I heard from Coastal Cloud, I was actually prepared to start an internship at a nationally-known company headquartered in Louisville, Kentucky.
However, by the grace of some higher power, Coastal Cloud emailed me after coming across my resume through the Summer Works program. They were looking for a summer intern in their newly established marketing department. After researching Coastal, I was skeptical to take a chance on such a young IT company (and I knew absolutely nothing about IT consulting). My wise mother sat me down and told me to take a chance. Boy, am I glad she did. Listed below are 3 things I learned as an intern at Coastal Cloud.
Lesson 1: Corporate Settings Don’t Have to be Stiff and Boring!
As I began the logistics of my first day, the common theme was clear with Coastal Cloud: casual. This shattered my stigma that offices were boring and dreary. I was told to wear something comfortable (hello jeans) and my start time was extremely flexible . I was shocked by the relaxation of it all, but quickly understood after my first few days at the office that as long as I did my job well, small things like a specific start time didn't really matter. The culture at Coastal Cloud is truly one-of-a-kind. Doors are always open, beer is in the fridge, and music plays from time to time. Being a virtual company, many employees take advantage of the flexibility and work from home which I got to enjoy some as well. I’m so grateful to have experienced a culture like this which enhanced my productivity and lowered my stress level.
Lesson 2: There’s More to Social Media Than You Think.
When I was first introduced the idea of a Social Media Calendar, I was confused. You mean to tell me that people don’t post randomly?! There’s actually organization that goes into it?! Incredible. In fact, there’s software that helps people schedule social media for months in advance. Much of that fell onto my desk; and I’m glad it did. I was able to format and write blog posts, as well as create and schedule social media. The goal of all of this is to increase traffic to our website, which has proven successful! I have learned just how important marketing is, especially to growing companies like Coastal. Getting the word out is how we acquire customers, plain and simple. I have loved marketing Coastal’s image and telling the world what we’re all about.
Lesson 3: It’s a Big World Out There.
When I discovered all the different industries that Coastal works with, I was floored. Our clients range from nonprofit to the public sector and from healthcare to real estate. It was fascinating to learn that each client has an extremely unique story in which our consultants get to immerse themselves in completely. Listening to the clients and their specific needs teaches our consultants about various industries, a unique experience in this industry. On my first day, Erik Dunnigan, the MidWest managing director, told me that’s why he loves this job so much. "We get to work with people from all over with different stories and passions."
I will always be exceptionally grateful for Coastal Cloud, who took a chance on me when I had no previous marketing experience. I have learned many more lessons than these and feel confident to apply them in the real world after my graduation in 9 short months. A huge thank you to the entire Coastal Cloud team for an incredible experience and for making me feel like a part of the family.