I’d say that graduation was probably the least of my worries at the time. I’ve always believed in myself, especially academically. I’ve always enjoyed learning new things. For example, in my free time, I enjoy researching a variety of topics, whether it be personal development, professional development, or just what is going on in the media.
However, soon after graduating, I saw how difficult it was to land a job in my desired field. So out of necessity, I began working at a fast-food restaurant.
I was raised in a single-parent household, and I’m very thankful for my mom because she instilled the hardworking mentality I have today—to never expect anybody to give you anything and to always go out and earn it, day after day. One of my motivations has always been to ensure that neither my mom nor I would have to struggle to do simple things like having a ride to and from work.
I strive to be the best I can be at everything I partake in. Every day, I would put on my uniform for work at the restaurant and go above and beyond my responsibilities to make sure everything ran smoothly.
Even though I dreaded most days because of poor management, I truly enjoyed working as a team with my coworkers to get the final product to the consumer while providing exceptional customer service. I stayed focused on quality and customer service, despite the poor management.
I’d spend eight, sometimes ten, hours dreaming each day about my long-term goals and how I’d provide for my family for years to come. I was convinced that my calling was in a more challenging role with advancement opportunities, where I could use my education and soft skills.
I hoped that I’d meet someone worth meeting every day I served customers, and it’s this same hope that has landed me where I am today.
Seizing a New Opportunity: Digital Marketing Bootcamp
It was on Indeed.com where I saw an opportunity to change my life. I had to take it. The opportunity was Highway Education, an online digital marketing bootcamp organization that trains aspiring marketers hands-on in complex systems. They only had one or two openings left in their marketing operations program—and I was able to join.
Highway Education’s marketing operations program included training in marketing automation platforms like Marketo Engage, Hubspot, Salesforce Marketing Cloud Account Engagement (formerly Pardot), Salesforce, Uxpressia, Figma, and Google Sheets.
Through hard work and determination, I was able to gain valuable skills and knowledge that would prepare me for a successful career in the complex world of marketing automation.
5 Soft Skills I Learned
Technical skills weren’t the only things I learned at Highway Education. There are five soft skills in particular that I strengthened during the program that I want to call out:
- Communication: In roleplay situations, I’d have to verbally explain the layout of campaigns inside marketing automation platforms as well as make recommendations based on spreadsheet data. I learned to describe the details of campaigns in writing, too, because sometimes that’s what the situation calls for.
- Teamwork: I’ve always enjoyed this aspect of sports, but it was very cool to see this aspect play a role in marketing automation. Marketing automation’s difficult to do alone, so working with a team is common. I was fortunate enough to collaborate with others in the program on a number of projects that I really enjoyed.
- Adaptability: I’ve practiced being adaptable for the majority of my life by not getting flustered by things outside of my control and focusing on the task at hand. In the training program, I was able to make the switch from physically going to work every day to working remotely eight hours a day.
- Creativity: A lot of the techniques we learned were great, but they did a fantastic job of exposing us to a wide variety of topics that we’d need to be able to understand even if we weren’t directly responsible for them—strategies like lead scoring, segmentation, integrations with CRM, integrations that are not within the CRM or MAP, and privacy regulations/compliance.
- Resourcefulness: I learned how to be resourceful at Highway Education through training that every field in the database should be put to use or provide some type of value to the organization. Never create fields or campaigns just for the sake of creation. Creating an asset in a marketing automation platform should always return revenue to a given organization during its lifecycle.
Starting My Next Journey at Definitive Results
In February 2023, I joined Definitive Results. This marked the next step forward in my career in marketing.
I’m confident my role is valued, appreciated, and will provide my future clients and me with the wins that lead to long-term success. Through perseverance and hard work, it’s possible to succeed, even in the face of adversity.
For anyone else in a similar situation, it’s important to remember that success is possible—no matter where you come from or what obstacles you face. With the right mindset, dedication, and a willingness to learn and grow, anyone can achieve their dreams. So, keep pushing forward and never give up on your dreams. With hard work and determination, you too can achieve success in the world of marketing automation or any other field you choose to pursue.