SOUNDS OF SUCCESS: MY PR ASSOCIATE PLAYLIST

Spotify x DEVENEY associate

I used to wonder what the soundtrack to my life would be. Then I realized I couldn’t make a playlist long enough. So, I started with a day. Whether it’s my keyboard clicking beneath my fingers as I write a press release, or the rattle of the streetcar on its tracks during my morning commute to work, every day here is punctuated by sounds.  Our playlists reflect a lot about us, so this is a day in my life as a Public Relations Associate at DEVENEY, told through my daily Spotify playlists. 

Morning

Every morning, I wake up an hour before I leave the house. After a few hits on the snooze button, I play my favorite Wake Up playlist. I’m not naturally a morning person, so this playlist features lively tunes to kickstart my day. As an Associate at an engagement agency, I have to stay sharp. Things move quickly here, and a crisis project can happen anytime. Starting my day with this energetic flow pushes me into starting my day at my best.

I commute to work on the streetcar every morning and listen to different podcasts to pass the time. I love the Mindvalley podcast for tapping into my potential and productivity. Mindvalley helps me tap into my creative flow. This allows me to start my day with confidence and mental energy.

Before lunch, I listen to something calm to get me in the zone. I focus and organize myself, check my emails. start projects, go to meetings, and establish a flow. 

Afternoon

I don’t listen to music during lunch, but if I did it would be the DEVENEY happy songs playlist. This playlist captures the office atmosphere and the spirit of the neighborhood.  I love exploring the beautiful Lower Garden District neighborhood during my break and trying restaurants nearby. My favorite is Lilly’s, their spicy tofu is heavenly. 

In the afternoon to jumpstart my productivity and knock out any deadlines, I listen to POLLEN. This eclectic playlist feels fresh and sunny with interesting new songs that keep focused and alert. This playlist helps me channel creative flow into writing talking points, conducting client research, building media lists or assisting with speaker training binder development.

Music inspires me to reach my goals and put my best (tapping) foot forward.

If you’re interested in joining the team, apply now to the Associate Program. The opportunity lasts for 12 weeks, starting in January. Associates may work a maximum of 20 hours per week. Interested students should apply by October 31, 2018 to be considered. To apply, please send a cover letter, resume, relevant writing samples, and/or portfolio examples to AssociateProgram@deveney.com. 

 

WEEKLY ASSOCIATE SERIES #2 5 NEW ORLEANS SUMMER ACTIVITIES

Ranked as one of the Top 15 Cities in the United States by Travel + Leisure, there is definitely no better place to spend your summer than in New Orleans. Although it might be hot, NOLA is filled to the brim with fantastic live music, mouthwatering food, and a different festival every day, so you’ll always have a reason to celebrate.

Without the added worry of schoolwork, DEVENEY’s summer associate  (internship) Program provides you with a valuable professional experience while allowing for time to discover and experience what makes NOLA so amazing.

Interested?

Take a break from submitting your application to one of DEVENEY’s summer positions and check out some of our team’s favorite summer activities:

 

  1. Running of the Bulls

Experience a New Orleans twist on this famous Spanish event by participating in the 13th annual Running of the Bulls during the second weekend of July. Don’t worry – there will be no actual bulls. Instead, participants are chased down the streets of New Orleans by the famous Big Easy Rollergirls.

 

  1. French Market Creole Tomato Festival

Enjoy the taste of New Orleans at this June festival celebrating Louisiana’s farmers and the arrival of their crops. Indulge in classic Creole recipes such as fried green tomatoes and tomato crawfish pies, all with a Blood Mary from the Blood Mary Market in hand.

 

  1. The Windsor Court Hotel

Located just steps away from the heart of the French Quarter, the Windsor Court Hotel is the perfect place to spend your day in the Big Easy. Soak up the sunshine and enjoy an incredible view of the New Orleans skyline at the hotel’s rooftop pool. Summer days at the Windsor Court just got even better with the addition of the Waterman Poolside Bar. Pool-goers can sip on a cocktail or glass of wine as they sit back, relax, and enjoy their summer days.

 

  1. The Fly at Audubon Park

Even though it is officially called “Butterfly Park,” all of the locals refer to Audubon Park’s riverside lookout as “The Fly.” Hidden behind Audubon Zoo, this is the perfect spot to relax on the grass with a daquiri in hand while the sun sets on the Mississippi River. The Fly is also the ideal location for a summer barbecue or crawfish boil with friends or family.

 

  1. Grab a Snoball

The ultimate way to cool down during the summer in New Orleans is with a snoball. Frequently confused with snow cones, snoballs are created using more thinly shaved ice, and maybe it’s just us, but they taste better too. Build your own unique snoball by blending together flavors, and for a local twist, add a topping of condensed milk (just trust us). You can also sweeten your cool treat with a scoop of ice cream on top, creating the ultimate summer dessert.

This list could continue forever as there are countless ways to spend your summer days in New Orleans. Having lived here for four years, I can promise that there is never “nothing to do” in the Big Easy.

As opposed to the regular Associate program, the summer opportunity is a full-time role, making for an experience that allows for a deeper connection with the agency environment and the city as a whole. So, get back to that application, pack your bags, hop on the streetcar, and discover New Orleans this summer!

For more information on DEVENEY’s available summer positions, click here.

WHY DEVENEY ASSOCIATES LOVE ORLEANS #1 THE FOOD

New Orleans is dominated by the restaurant and hospitality industries. We have some world-class chefs and plenty of traditional Cajun food to go around. But once you apply and get accepted to the DEVENEY Summer Associate position, you’ll want to try some less-touristy and more-budget-friendly options, here’s the ultimate list for you:

 

1 Deja Vieux Food Park (1681 Religious St)

This permanent food truck park is home to some of the best street food I’ve ever had. My personal favorite is Johnny’s Jamaican Grill where Montego-Bay native Clinton Haughton (you can call him Jamaican Johnny) serves up authentic Caribbean classics like jerk meats, curried goats, callaloo, and fried plantains. The park also features a full bar, a stage, and a covered patio with TV’s and jumbo versions of all of your favorite table games like Jenga, UNO, and Connect Four – consider it the perfect location for after-work happy hour with your new co-workers.

 

2 Arabella (2258 St Claude Ave)

It can be tough to find good food after an evening client event. Most options are some form of greasy diner food. Not Arabella! Open until 11pm on the weekends, this small pasta restaurant manages to be both Star Wars themed and incredibly cozy. The dimly lit interior is lined with pieces from local artists — a great conversation starter while you wait for your (generously portioned) dinner. Plus, the menu includes a build-your-own option; so, you won’t have to worry about not liking anything on the menu.

 

3 1000 Figs (3141 Ponce De Leon St)

Wow. 1000 Figs. Amazing. Hands down the best falafel in town (including the stuff you can get at some world-renowned restaurants Uptown). I only wish it were closer to the DEVENEY office. I’d recommend the falafel sandwich (only $6.50!) with some shareable sides like Brussel sprouts and fries. The restaurant itself is tiny, which adds to its ethereal Instagram-friendly air, but doesn’t make it the best place to linger and chat. Instead, after your meal, head next door to Swirl for a glass (or three) of wine.

 

4 Dat Dog (5030 Freret) + Piccola (4525 Freret)

Dat Dog is a DEVENEY Associate favorite. It’s cheap; It’s fun; It’s delicious.

The hot dog chain is famous for its brightly colored buildings and outdoor seating. It’s very Instagrammable and makes a great place to watch a sports game or stop for a quick meal during a night out. The best part? The outdoor seating all but guarantees you’ll get to pet some dogs. The Freret location is my favorite because it’s far from the downtown crowds and close to Piccola Gelateria. Always, always, always take the stroll down Freret to Piccola. This ‘little gelateria’ serves the best gelato on this side of the Atlantic, and the proprietors treat everyone who walks through the door like family. I’m a super fan.

 

5 Saba (5757 Magazine St)

Ok, this one is somewhat touristy and not as budget-friendly as the other places on the list, but bear with me. Saba opened in May 2018 under the direction of five-time James Beard Award-winning executive chef Alon Shaya. While this restaurant can be full of tourists during big events like Mardi Gras, graduation week, and parent’s weekends at local universities, it’s always casual and intimate and doesn’t feel like a cookie-cutter tourist trap. The menu is made up of shareable plates of varying sizes that can cater to any and all dietary restrictions. You can’t go wrong with any of them — trust me, I’ve actually had them all.

This list is just the tip of the iceberg. There are so many great restaurants to try in the city!

If, like me, you’re interested in the restaurant’s brand just as much as the food, check out DEVENEY’s work with restaurants like Arnaud’s and Ruth’s Chris.

Want to take it a step further and learn the ins-and-outs of marketing, advertising, and public relations in the restaurant industry? Check out DEVENEY’s Associate Program for the opportunity of a lifetime working with some of the most well-known restaurants in New Orleans.

MEET YOUR SUPERVISORS

When searching for your summer internship, questions like, “what tasks will I be assigned,” “what is the day-to-day like” and “what will I be paid” may be running through your head. However, one question that often goes unaddressed is: “Who will I be working with?”

At DEVENEY, our Associate Program is unique in that it is led by two previous Associates: Brittany Cruickshank, Senior Account Executive + LifeCare Practice Lead, and Samantha Krupicka, Associate Advertising Account Executive. Over the past several years, Brittany and Samantha’s careers at DEVENEY have truly come full circle. From Associates to full-time employees and leaders of the same program that taught them, the two have gained the skills not only to supervise but also to truly lead and teach each new class of Associates as they begin their professional careers at DEVENEY.

When asked about their experience as Associates, Brittany and Samantha both acknowledged the Program’s role in preparing them for their professional careers. Samantha recalls, “I learned pretty much everything I know about really working in the industry from being an Associate (and now an Account Executive) at DEVENEY. I was able to learn skills and utilize them at the same time – experience I feel like you really have to gain through an internship like DEVENEY’s Associate or Summer Scholar Programs.” In agreement with Samantha, Brittany mentions how her experience as an Associate allowed her to see the theories she learned in college come to life and produce tangible results.

As Public Relations Associates, Brittany and Samantha had the opportunity to refine their professional writing skills by focusing on building media lists, writing press releases, and drafting pitches for both local and regional media outlets. “I was trusted with actual client work”, says Brittany, “and then [I was] given the opportunity to see the client work come to life with real results.”

If you’re not interested in Public Relations, you’re in luck – DEVENEY’s Associate Program also includes Creative and Digital positions. The artistic talent of Creative Associates shine through the graphics and other pieces of collateral they design for client and agency projects. For those like me who are more interested in the social media aspect of the business, the Digital Associate position is the one for you. In this role, I create and schedule content for a variety of web, email, and social marketing campaigns.

Brittany and Samantha also share a passion for teaching, and their roles as Associate Supervisors provide them with the opportunity to blend their love for sharing knowledge with marketing. Brittany mentions how the DEVENEY Associate Program is a great way to “train and educate the future of marketing” by assigning Associates with real work that provides value to the team. As opposed to interns who fetch coffee or make copies all day, DEVENEY Associates are “integrated into the dynamic of the workplace and are often working on client projects alongside full-time employees,” says Samantha.

As they continue to receive applications daily, Brittany and Samantha would like to share three pieces of advice to all applicants:

  • Proofread your application
  • After you submit your application, follow up
  • Be confident and open-minded

 

Interested in learning more about the Associate Program? Click here!

 

HOW TO BEST UTILIZE YOUR INTERNS

Utilizing Interns

As a college student, I knew that the goal was to score a full-time position at the agency of your dreams, but to succeed, the small steps come first. Enter: The Life of an Intern. To work your way to the top, you have to start at the bottom (even as a college graduate). But guess what? The bottom isn’t so bad if you work for a company that treats you like an asset instead of an errand boy.

I love working for DEVENEY as an Associate (they don’t even call us interns) because they give me actual work. I feel that my presence is necessary, and that my time is being put to good use.

Below are the top 10 ways to best utilize your company’s interns from the perspective of, well, an intern.

Treat Them with Respect

There’s a saying here in New Orleans: “Be Nice or Leave.” Those are words to live by. The best places to work, including DEVENEY, have at least one thing in common: their employees get along and work well as a team. Keep in mind that people in the workforce will not always be nice—c’est la vie—but if you want your interns to work hard and turn out the best possible work, be nice to them. It feels good to be included, and when you feel good, you do your job well.

Be Clear, Concise and Timely

It is difficult to get to work when you don’t know what you’re working toward or how you’re going to get there. Be patient with your interns – some may still be in school and learning the ropes of the real world. Encourage them to think for themselves, but don’t shoot them down for asking a question about an assignment. After a briefing, send them an email to outline what you discussed. This way, they have in writing what you are expecting from them, how they should attack it efficiently, and when it’s due.

Teach Them What You Wish You’d Known

Interns are constantly learning, and it benefits both you and them to spread your knowledge about the profession, or what you wish you had known when you were their age. DEVENEY assigns “buddies” to all employees as part of a peer mentorship initiative, but they are especially useful for entry-level positions where every day can feel more overwhelming than the next. Make your interns listen, whether they like it or not. It never hurts to impart a little “back in my day…” wisdom.

Ask Them for Advice!

DEVENEY encourages “reverse-mentoring,” or the process by which seasoned employees attempt to learn a little about the ever-changing trends and practices of the younger generation from—you guessed it—the youngins themselves. Take advantage of their knowledge and experience.

Many brands are directly marketing to their age group, but their preferences and interests are constantly changing. Use this fluidity for the benefit of your internal and client relations. Maybe the company Instagram needs a touch-up, ask an intern, chances are they checked theirs less than five minutes ago.

Encourage Team Bonding

Invite your interns to casual lunches, after-work celebrations, or even out for drinks. An internship is an opportunity to get to know professionals in the workforce on more than just a “Hi, my name is…” basis, and it’s an opportunity for employers to get the word out about how great their company is to people who will soon be applying for full-time positions. Every day at the office can be like a networking event (but with less nametags and schmoozing), and a chance for your interns to build their resumes while also building your company’s reputation as a great place to work.

Give Them Real Projects, Not Just Busywork

It’s a waste of everyone’s time to hand out useless work. There is no need to spend your valuable (and billable) time making up assignments for interns who will be able to tell they are made up. Give them a project, or ask them to handle smaller tasks that will make your life easier.

DEVENEY requires all interns to handle the recruitment materials for the next class, providing us with our own concrete project complete with deadlines, deliverables, a timeline, as well as roles and responsibilities. If we don’t work together to get it done, it won’t get done, and that’s a lesson that needs to be learned quickly in any position.

Make Them Answer Their Own Questions (Sometimes)

If your interns learn how to think for themselves, they will turn out better work at a quicker pace. Although you should not receive questions with judgment or a poor temper, encourage interns to use their brains (oh, and Google) before they resort to sending you three emails regarding that question you’ve answered about 1,000 times. Always proof their work for mistakes, but I guarantee they will make less mistakes if they are taught to work for information rather than having it handed to them on a silver platter. Share with them a few examples of good work on the front end so they already have an idea of what you’re looking for. There is no need to reinvent the wheel with each assignment.

Listen to Their Ideas and Opinions

If interns feel like throwaway members of a team, they will not try. When interns aren’t trying, you are paying them to sit around. Plants make better decorative ornaments than people, I promise. Allow your interns to sit in on meetings (when acceptable) and take their ideas and opinions into consideration when deciding on next steps. Sometimes all it takes is one fresh pair of eyes to put a new and valuable spin on a certain element of a project. They will learn from their bad ideas, and you will learn from their good ones.

Require Them to Research! Research! Research!

Full-time employees and team leads do not always have time to devote to compiling information about a competitor or potential client. However, there is nothing like a well-organized overview of a topic to ignite work on a new project and allow employees to hit the ground running. Save yourself the time, and allow your interns to build their knowledge and their portfolios. Some of your best researchers may in fact be your interns. I lost count of the amount of research papers I wrote in college, and I would like to put those skills to use for the benefit of my coworkers. This tip also connects to #7 – the more they are required to research, the more self-sufficient they will become, meaning less emails in your inbox.

Give Them Positive AND Negative Feedback

Finally, let your interns know what they’re doing right and what they’re doing wrong. Some companies are inclined to shower their interns with indifference either due to lack of time (it’s broke, but I don’t have time to fix it) or obliviousness (Interns? We have interns?). It is beneficial to everyone involved to provide all types of feedback, and in a timely and organized manner. Do a first week check-in, a midterm review and a final review. Let your interns know what they did well, and what they could do better next time. Also, don’t be afraid to ask your interns what you can do to help them succeed – treat it like a collaborative performance review. When small things get done right, big things turn out even better.