Jessica has a degree in advertising and marketing communications from the University of Bedfordshire and an MSc International Management from Loughborough University. She works as a consultant for an online advertising and marketing company.
I love living in Western nations, especially the UK. It is the lifestyle, friendly neighbourhood and challenging working environment that attracts me most. I have always believed that I can get to where I want to be if I deliver competently and confidently in this country.
I currently work as a professional consultant for a British search engine optimisation (SEO), pay-per-click (PPC) advertising and online marketing company. The company promotes the English Premier League to football fans in China. My role involves adjusting the website in a Chinese-friendly way, maintaining and increasing a high volume of visitors and encouraging them to participate in our competitions.
I knew that work experience is vital to get a job anywhere, so I started to prepare a long time ago. When I first entered university in China, I also helped my family’s international trading businesses, importing and exporting mainly to South America and Europe.
After graduating with a degree in advertising and marketing communications from the University of Bedfordshire, I got an internship at Saatchi & Saatchi Beijing as a managing assistant, helping on the Lexus Hybrid Model launching project. I then returned to Loughborough University for my Masters degree.
Studying in the UK definitely helped me obtain a British style of thinking. Learning technical terms and theories during my course also helped develop my understanding and communication skills.
I found my first UK job by attending an event run by the East Midlands universities, including Loughborough University. I met a small internet marketing agency called Metafocus Global, which was looking for someone familiar with international trading and the car industry, and that just happened to be me! I became their full-time employee after a part-time trial period.
I built a good rapport with English colleagues, learning from them every day: working approaches, British culture/rituals, history and even new slang words. Working in a different country, you need to adapt to their style and make yourself part of the team. After three months, I could think in a British mindset and began to understand what colleagues were doing and how to respond correctly.
Working in a small company is very beneficial for a fresh graduate, because you can learn much more than you could ever imagine. As there aren’t many employees in the company, you need to be alert to any changes and manage problems quickly. At Metafocus Global, I had ten of my own British and Chinese clients. The pace was unbelievably fast and pressured; however working here was the best self-development for me.
I suggest using your time wisely while you are still at university. It is a short time, especially for one-year postgraduates. Getting experience in the UK or at home will help with future applications. Being part of the culture is crucial as well, socialising with British friends after studying and participating in the HOST family programme to find a local family to stay with during the Christmas holiday. All these will help future job hunting. Don't let any opportunity slip through your hands.
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