Rewriting the script for event networking

My practical training began as a copywriter for Brella Oy, a SaaS company located here in Jyväskylä. They provide a simple networking tool for events. I had no real experience in either copywriting nor in the SaaS field, but I was given a chance regardless. Being a native English speaker has its perks at times.

I started in December and ended in March, and those months flew by. There was so much to learn and do, and I my tasks quickly grew beyond mere copywriting. Most of my job involved writing or reading, so I thought of myself as a writer in general for the company. I did copywriting for their blog and some sales letters as well, but I also did some UX writing and microcopy, which was the most enjoyable part of the experience. Trying to say what we want to say in as few words as possible while keeping the user’s interest is challenging but incredibly rewarding when it’s done right.

The company itself was a dream to work for. All of my workmates had a deep belief in the company, making it feel more like a team than a business. Each person was driven by the desire to improve the networking landscape. I had no personal experience in networking at events. Networking itself, however, was something I did not particularly enjoy nor consider myself skilled at. I always believed that networking was the domain of the extrovert. Maybe it is, but it doesn’t have to be anymore. Networking doesn’t have to be work, and shouldn’t be work. We can get food delivered right to our homes, we can connect with long lost friends, so why shouldn’t we be able to find interesting people at important events? We have the technology, so we might as well use it.

That’s part of the challenge, however – people aren’t aware of the technology and how to use it. That is what we need to show the people responsible for events, and it became my task to write content to inform people about event networking and how to fix it. The content has to be engaging as well, and readable, and so many other things to make it effective. Anyone can write. This I believe. However, writing effectively is a skill that takes time to master, and it’s a skill I hope to improve on every day. Being creative while bringing real value to my team is a dream job, and one I hope to continue for a long time.

There’s a phrase: it’s not what you know, it’s who you know. I believed that like I believed my football team could win the championship: only after it happened. I didn’t put a lot of emphasis on my own personal connections, cultivating new ones, or asking for help in general. However, after my internship, I can say that a well-placed connection can do so much for you. This internship happened because I met someone in the company and asked for a chance to write a few blog posts for them. I met many interesting people during my internship that opened the possibility for some freelancing, possibilities that I probably never would have found without this opportunity.

Your knowledge is valuable, but you’ll never know everything. Make sure you diversify your portfolio and get out there into the world. Meet some people. Learn something about them. You never know who you might be able to help and who might be able to help you. After all, it’s not what you know, but who you know.