I Love My New Job!

For anyone who hasn’t been reading all my posts on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn about how I’m looking for tech support pretty much everywhere…. I have news: I started my new job as an international recruiting coordinator at Astreya Partners Monday July 16, 2012.

And it has been AWESOME!! =D The team I work with is incredible. They’re all super nice, intelligent, hard-working and social people around my age. They’ve been just wonderful about answering all my questions while I’m training, sharing helpful tips, and we even go out to happy hour at Pedro’s down the street after work!

Yeah, I told you guys my coworkers are the shit ;D

My bosses are even MORE awesome though! My supervisor, Jenny, is super chill and really motivating! She’s able to make the work environment so energizing that I’m easily able to do my best work =] Plus, she’s very approachable so I’m not worried I’ll ever have any problems!

And the big boss in charge is kind of like Santa Clause. He brings bagels for everyone Wednesday mornings, keeps the fridge stocked with snacks, pays for us to order catering from a different restaurant every Monday and even ordered this cool ice cream truck to come for one of my coworkers’ birthday last week! I can see why they say you gain the Astreya 15 just like in college now ;D

As for the job itself…. I love it =] I spend my day sourcing people to help them get jobs. This includes looking for resumes on LinkedIn, Craigslist and other resume banks; using social media to reach other potential candidates; getting back in touch with contacts who might know someone who would be a good match for the position or who might have some advice about recruiting in a foreign market.

Did I forget to mention I recruit all over the world? ^^ I source for Technical Support Technicians and Equipment Maintenance Technicians (pretty much desktop support) as well as Technical Team Leads (managers, supervisors) all over the place! Just in North America my recruiter, Sara (who’s awesome too ^^), and I are in charge of SF, Mountain View, Seattle, San Bruno, Kirkland, LA, NYC, Washington DC, Chicago, Toronto and Boulder, Colorado. And in Asia Pacific ? Taipiei, Seoul, Tokyo, Beijing, Sydney and India. Oh, and can’t forget Europe! London, Dublin, Zurich, Paris…

Thankfully, I didn’t have to source for every single location my first week. That would have been insane! I’m really excited to build my network even more in all of these places though ^^

Did you guys want to see my cube?!

A Sweet Last Day at Contract Live

As anyone who read my last blog post knows, Friday was my last day at Contract Live. Before I share pictures from my going-away party, I’d like to briefly explain the reason for my departure.

The short of it is that it just wasn’t the right startup for me. My bosses and I agreed that someone else would be a better match for the startup and the position, so we’re leaving on very good terms =]

This was a very interesting first experience working in France: I got a great introduction into French startups, learned a lot about how things work here, and had a very intelligent boss to learn all sorts of things from. It may not be the best place for me, but I definitely don’t perceive it as time wasted and will keep some nice memories!

So now it’s time to get back out there and look for work =] Do let me know if you hear of any Bay Area startups looking for someone to come in and help with comm., social media and e-marketing, amongst other things O=]

I’m still waiting on pictures (and videos ;D) to come in from coworkers, but here’s a sneak peak and I’ll update this post once I have everything.

I hid Kinder Surprise (Yum!) eggs all over our office for everyone to find in an early Easter celebration! There was one hidden in the printer O=D

Bowser laid an egg!

Project Happy: I have 2 moments to share from today.

1.) I had tons of fun riding on the back of a friend’s motorcycle all over Paris. We drove alongside the Seine River to go to the Eiffel Tower =]

2.) That same friend told me I seemed like an energetic, smart kid and that I’d be going places, so he’d like me to hit him up when I decide to start my own business (I’m sooo flattered he thinks I have so much potential and have what it takes to create my own startup <3)

What about you? Tell me about a nice moment you had today =]

Have You Been Delivering Happiness?

Just because I can’t use my camera doesn’t mean I can’t keep sharing cool stuff with you =]

Today’s pick: Delivering Happiness. I was researching the judges from last week’s Launch conference and got to Tony Hsieh, and boy is this guy awesome! He wrote a book called Delivering Happinesswhich became a full-blown movement dedicated to spreading happiness. See why I’m wild about it?

Picture taken from Nuno Barreto's blog (click for link)

It’s all about sharing the good stuff and making people happy! How do they do that? By inspiring people to do good =] to help each other, to plan events all about making people happy, and by spreading the word!

How can you get involved? Go right here.

And don’t forget to add their button to your website! 

Dream Job: International House Activities Coordinator

All this talk about living life to the fullest and finding a fulfilling occupation has made me kind of pensive lately. I’ve been dreaming up all kinds of ideal careers! Here’s the first one I’ll tell you about.

I volunteered at my university’s International House (i-house) this morning. It was tons of fun. I got to chat up students from Germany, Saudi Arabia, Taiwan, Japan, Thailand… you name it! Today was the first day of a whole week preparing international students for their first semester in the U.S. and it got me thinking… I could totally work at a place like this =]

I love meeting people from all over the world, speak 4 languages, am used to dealing with cultural differences, have tons of experience working with foreigners and am used to planning sight-seeing trips/taking care of reception both for friends of mine who fly in and for interns placed in the Bay Area by AIESEC San Jose.

I drove all the way down to San Diego to take care of AIESEC reception for our Dutch trainee, Jeroen (first from the left)

AIESEC and my own love of traveling and making friends with people from the world over have prepared me for this kind of occupation pretty well…

Let’s look at the perks

  1. Meet students from all over the world (and make friends =] )
  2. Motivation to learn even more languages!
  3. Do work that is much more fun than being stuck in a cubicle all week long
  4. Plan and go on trips all over the Bay Area
Now for the cons
  1. Probably doesn’t pay very well
  2. Long hours
  3. Work on weekends
  4. Event planning (?)

Yeah… I don’t especially enjoy event planning, but I think I should specify. I don’t like to plan big, professional, time-consuming events (like the alumni mixer AIESEC San Jose put on last fall) but smaller-scale events for foreign students are different. Those are more laid-back and I’m used to setting them up so it shouldn’t be a problem.

All things considered, this would be a super-fun job! Now I have no illusions… the i-house’s coordinator was running all over the place and seemed pretty stressed out this morning. She was getting ready for a long week of activities! She also seemed very happy though, like she truly enjoys her job. Maybe I should interview her for a blog post–yeah?

I guess what I need to figure out now is whether there are “i-houses” at universities in Paris!

What do you think? Would I make a good international student activities coordinator?

How young is old? Making the most of the time I have, Part 2

Sorry it took me so long to get back to discussing this! I’m glad you guys liked my first post on this topic though =] Let’s continue our discussion…

PART 2 Where does work fit into all this?

The other day a friend of mine asked me why I work so much. I have savings and my parents are kindly paying my university fees and rent… so why do I always have a job? Food, clothes and movies don’t cost that much! (although university books do =/)

Is this the look of a workaholic? Working while others socialize

I guess there are 2 parts to this.

  1. Honestly, I just like to work. Internships and part-time jobs always teach me something. They stimulate me intellectually and make me feel good about being productive. I know this may sound strange to many people, but I just wouldn’t enjoy being a couch potato every once in a while if I wasn’t doing lots with the rest of my time. (Notice how this ties in to my other post about Growing Up Abroad ;D)
  2. Financial security. I have savings now, and I would like to keep it that way. I’ve seen what a depression can do the last few years and I want to keep adding to my little pile of gold, scrooge-style (that, and I do love to shop!)

Relating this back to getting old too quickly… is working part of living life to the fullest? Is it only taking away from the time I could be spending doing other things like traveling? It’s true that it has been taking time away from exercise, but I truly enjoy doing PR and social media for trint.me, a startup I started working for a few weeks ago.

My other job, BathFitter, I’m doing more for the money. I enjoy working there sometimes, but some shifts can turn out to be excruciatingly boring… Is that a good balance?

Should I quit my jobs and just enjoy life until I move to France?

How young is old? Making the most of the time I have, Part 1

This is going to be a long entry to I’ll chop it up into 2-3 pieces. Keep an eye out for the sequel!

This is going to sound absolutely crazy, but recently I’ve started to feel a little old. Well, not exactly. As a Global Studies major, I’ve looked at women’s rights and poverty all over the world quite a bit… and it’s been getting to me. In class this week we watched 6 Billion and Beyond (the 3rd or 4th time for me!) and it got me thinking.

What am I going to do?

Many young women all over the world have been wishing and fighting for the chance (not even the right!) to delay marriage and childbirth. I’ve been fortunate enough to be raised in cultures where women are routinely reminded of their rights and choices, and pushed to take advantages of them. Even we can’t delay childbirth forever though.

My mother was 27 or 28 when she had me. I’m currently 22. If I have my first child when I’m 27 I only have 5 years left to explore the world and do what I want before I must devote myself to caring for a young life. If I wait until I’m in my mid-thirties there may be a significantly increased risk of complications and birth defects.

That’s kind of depressing. Assuming I don’t decide not to have children (which, admittedly, is beginning look more and more attractive–hey, everyone’s adopting from third world nations nowadays, right?!) I only have 5-10 (dare I push 15?) years left. Also, do I want to be fifty-something when my kids are in high school? They’ll think I’m an old foagy who’s waaaay past remembering what it was like going through puberty and couldn’t possibly relate to them.

There’s still so much I still want to do! Spend a few years with my relatives in France. Work on health/micro-finance/women’s rights projects in Africa. Am I going to have enough time to do all of this (and all the other things I’ll discover and want to do)?

How do I balance and organize my time so that I’ll have enough time to travel around the world and do what I love without waiting “too long” to have children? Even more importantly, have I been making good use of the time I’m so fortunate to have?

What do you guys think? Will you wait a long time to have kids? Are you even worrying about this yet?!

Choosing a Career: Money or Fun?

Last weekend I was stuck at work during a particularly boring shift and started wondering how I ended up there. Usually my job is really fun–I get to talk to people who stop by our display at fairs and tell them about bath remodeling while enjoying the festive atmosphere and exploring the attractions during breaks. As a matter of fact, two weeks ago I worked a car show and got to check out beautiful old cars while I worked! However, both last Saturday and Sunday I was unfortunately stuck working at a mall where few people walk by our store and even fewer bother to come in. As I stood there waiting for customers, bored stiff, I began wondering why I had taken this job and realized that it could make for a brilliant blog entry (I found something productive to do with my time: coming up with topic ideas!)

In case you’re wondering, I decided to take this job because I was bored–great way to remedy that, right? I hadn’t worked in a few months and felt like I was not being productive (or filling my bank account–let’s face it, moving to a new country can be expensive!) and I thought this sounded like fun. At first I looked for PR internships, but quickly realized that no one would want to bother training an intern they could only have for a few months. And so my fate was sealed.

Even though I would have enjoyed all the things that typically come with an internship: learning new things, developing my skills, making industry contacts… I don’t regret taking this job. I usually have a lot of fun and it’s a great way of making some extra cash before moving ($13/hr isn’t too bad for a part-time job!) I do think I’ll be careful when I look for work in Paris though–I’ll make sure the long-term positions I apply for have interesting work and allow for personal development.

Let’s hear from you guys though. What’s more important: making money or doing something you enjoy?