Note: in case you landed in here directly for some reason, here is the PART 1.
PART 2. PARIS
My Parisian journey started in 2011 (so goes the 4th number of the title) with a traditional Business School graduate career path. I was a digital learning and digital communications manager in a big international corporation – L’Oreal.
2 years in, I realised that the corporate world wasn’t quite my cup of tea and decided to shift gears and pursue start-up career instead. I joined Assessfirst (SAAS platform solution offering Personality and Motivation test for recruiters and candidates). During my time there I worked on rebranding, product positioning, marketing strategy, website creation, and digital marketing … It was an ultimate piscine-like experience that made me absorb a tonne of articles, tutorials, books, peer-to-peer learning, and “learning-by-doing” lessons in a short period of time. But my biggest takeaway from this experience was the fact that I’ve got to review and reform my way of doing things: from the corporation’s “perfect planning” to the life-like “done over perfect”.
I’ve got the first taste of all the excitement and hardship that a start-up has to offer. I realised I will never go back to the classic job environment: the one that doesn’t have this dynamic, demanding, engaging and all-consuming energy that a start-up does. And it was then that I first started to seriously consider starting my own company in a not so distant future.
With all this in mind, I started to think of my future experiences as a preparation for this “not so distant future”. Considering every future job as a learning experience on the “entrepreneur essentials” syllabus. And I figured that the most essential among all would be the technical skills.
I started with the baby steps – learning HTML and CSS3 online so that today I can read and write the web pages, modify templates and not get lost in WordPress (yes, I know that it’s still very basic, but nevertheless). And then I found a job in a consulting firm that combines Business Processes focus and Technical expertise. And so here I am today, 2 years after (surprise surprise) working on Salesforce (SAAS software too) implementation projects (or as we fancily call it here “digital transformation projects”).
If you had the patience to read it to this point you can certainly see that the 42 has a pre-destined place in the story. What you might not know yet, however, is the bigger WHY? of my decision to get there (there is a whole other article in fact, but I thought it would worth spending my summary vacations at the 42 retreat). So what I am looking for at 42, is first the atmosphere of my “rich” on brain exercises childhood, when I used to be surrounded by people who think fast and have at least 140 IQ (even though I know it’s not the most accurate measurement, it does its job to illustrate the idea). Secondly, it’s a personal challenge to test my brain limits, or its learning capacity (just to make sure that it hasn’t yet reached the degradation stage of its development haha). And third, is to meet new friends and to create memories worth being told to my grandchildren someday haha
Looking back on the post I have realised that it got way too long again and so the rest will come in the last part of this post – PART 3, or EKATERINA’s USER MANUEL.