I was always one of those people who loved school; A fresh schedule, sharpened pencils, stack of sparkling new (and entirely unnecessary) school supplies, the promise of straight A's (yes I was that kid) and the undeniable need for a planner. For 17 years I knew what September had in store and then suddenly... I didn't.
When you graduate from college and enter the workforce, it's impossible to know what to expect. Will the days be long? The people nice? Will anyone care when I have a bad day? Will I become friends with my coworkers? Will I fit in?
Soon after starting my job in advertising, I found out. Slowly but surely I navigated my way through the agency and eventually found myself with the content strategy team. When you think of the traditional ad-man, you're not thinking of the content strategist. The content strategy team does not get recognition or even noticed all that often. They're not the ones hosting fancy parties or whose names are written in the lobby, instead they are the the navy seals behind the scenes getting things done and over the last two years, they have become my family.
When I started at Ogilvy I had no idea what to expect and now, three years later, I can honestly say the content strategy team has far exceeded my expectations. To describe them as the best, most fun, honest, smart and caring coworkers anyone could ask for, would be a significant understatement.
We share everything from bad dates, apartment hunting, wardrobe opinions and work frustrations to relationship problems, friendship woes and even family feuds . We spend more time together than most of us do with our families (or roommates in my case) and we see each other nearly every single day. We're like our own little content family, and today was one of my family members birthdays, so I'm dedicating this post to him.
When I first joined the team, I didn't get to know Andrew very well right away. But, as time wore on, we began working together, then joking with each other in passing, then grabbing lunch at the same time, and now two years later, I can say that he is one of my good friends and someone I admire both professionally and personally. He's hilariously funny (though he'll deny it at every turn) and when he asks you a question, he's genuinely interested in hearing the answer (not alway a given these days). He's a great friend (he got me a voo-doo doll after my last break up and consistently offers his knee cap breaking services should I need them), he's my biggest baking fan, and an amazing coworker whom I'm luck to work with every day.
In honor of Andrew's birthday I baked a cake and we had a little team party (surprise of course) to spend time together away from our desks. As I glanced around the room during the celebration I realized how close I've gotten with my team. I genuinely enjoy seeing them everyday, like knowing what's going on in their lives and love that they know everything that's going on in mine. Sometimes I complain about work or projects or hours or process but at the end of the day I feel so lucky to call the content strategy team my work family, and as my three year anniversary approaches, I know that I hit the coworker jackpot.
The finished product (after many attempts)
Cake being enjoyed by all!
Some cake semantics: The cake is vanilla with chocolate buttercream (cake recipe courtesy of Sweetapolita; buttercream recipe courtesy of myself). Those of you who know me, know I'm not a big vanilla fan. I have perfected my own chocolate cake recipe and it's my go to for birthday's, graduations, etc. However, one of my coworkers doesn't like chocolate, so in an attempt to be diplomatic (and widen my recipe repertoire) I opted to make a classic vanilla cake.
The recipe called for sifting, reverse creaming, cooling and flipping...all good things, but not at 1am on a Thursday night with two failed attempts behind you and the option of "try again another day" not an option. What happened, you ask? Well, the first layer stuck to the bottom of the pan (my fault) and the second layer was over full so the outside burnt while the inside never cooked. Cake flops aside, this was not exactly what I was looking for in my go-to vanilla cake (to match my go-to chocolate). The search for the perfect vanilla cake continues, I'll keep you informed.
Happy weekend and of course, a very happy birthday to Andrew!