This time we spoke to HANNAH MCKEOWN – a Queen’s University International Business with French graduate.
Hannah worked for Adventures between 2020-2021. When asked to talk about when she was here and what she did she explained:
“I came to Adventures for my placement year during university, I studied International Business with French and had previous experience in social media marketing so it was the perfect fit for me. I unfortunately wasn’t able to relocate to the office in Paris due to covid so I worked from home in Belfast. While I was of course devastated that my dream of moving and working in Paris, especially in such a creative working environment, was taken away, I was so glad that the team was flexible and was able to adapt and support me to continue my role during such an uncertain time.
My role was initially the Marketing and Author Relations Officer with Eloquens.com. Here, I was mainly tasked with finding, onboarding, and managing professionals who had knowledge and expertise in specialised areas of business and management. I loved the people-facing aspects of the role, such as discussing with talented professionals about the potential of their knowledge on the site, helping authors make the most of the platform with their content, and constantly ideating with the close-knit team.
Next, I moved to Wimi, the project management solution, as an International Business Developer, focusing on growing the international client base through sourcing new leads and nurturing them throughout their trial period of our product. I enjoyed having the opportunity to reach out to professionals and offer them a solution to a real problem that I knew their business suffered with.
After my 12-month placement was over, I was not quite ready to say goodbye to adVentures just yet and I was very lucky to have the opportunity to take on more responsibility over the summer as Platform Manager back at Eloquens.com. This time, my role involved managing a small team and overseeing the running of the site, which I loved.
Thanks to this short experience managing people and seeing the day-to-day operations of a fast-paced start-up, I realised that project management is something I have a great interest in as I enjoyed seeing projects right from ideation until fruition, and all of the intricacies that were needed to make it happen.”
Tell us about your first experience with AdVentures?
“As I completed my placement virtually, my initial experiences with AdVentures were different than most. At the time, I heard that many of my friends’ placement companies were not able to support them during the time and they were left without, having to return to University instead. This was not a problem for adVentures, as mentioned. It was fantastic to hear such optimism even in the initial interview about the willingness to adapt to the team’s needs.”
My first thoughts were that adVentures is a business that valued its people and this only fuelled my desire to join!
< < < Eloquoon: Mascot at one of our portfolio companies: Eloquens.com > > >
What were your initial objectives going in? Were you able to reach your objectives?
“My main objective when joining adVentures was to become an integral part of the team. I wanted to become knowledgeable in my role and make myself known so my teammates would value my perspective and come to me for ideas or advice, just like I would for them. Also, I was determined to prove myself and be trusted with greater responsibility. Overall, the main goal was simply to make the most of it even though I was remote.
I was absolutely able to meet my objectives. The team is very close-knit and welcoming even virtually, and I was able to learn from them every day and build a wealth of knowledge that helped me become a solid source of advice, especially towards the end of my experience as new team members joined. I was trusted with onboarding and training new recruits, and with eventually becoming platform manager and managing a small team over the summer. The experience exceeded my expectations and I left feeling empowered, with the skillset ready to take on my final year of university and the knowledge to build upon throughout my future career!”
What are your plans for the future?
“I have just completed my final year of university, where I finished among the top 4 of my course. This was largely thanks to a project I completed with another start-up, where many of the skills and knowledge I acquired through my placement with adVentures truly shone.
I’m now looking forward to beginning my master’s studies in project management in Dublin, a decision fuelled by the experiences I gained with adVentures which sparked the initial interest in project management as an area of business that I could see myself in.
My plan after my master’s is undecided, but that’s somehow still so exciting! With my experience and skillset, I can go anywhere with the right among of hard work, and that’s what adVentures really did for me. I am so grateful to the whole team, but specifically Tim who was so supportive, even from hundreds of miles away!”
We wish you all the best Hannah! Thank you for your time with us!
Interviewer: Francesca Longhurst