4 July 2013
FIE Blog #2
The second week of our working schedule was a transition for me. The FIE internship team agreed to terminate my placement with Blur Group and provide me with a new placement after dissatisfaction with my position. Much to my delight, there was a company that could take on another intern and I was placed in a PR position within the fashion industry called my-wardrobe.com. I had an interview during the second week and then started work the third week. I was confident that this would be such a better fit for me after the interview and after my first week of work, I felt pretty comfortable in my workplace and very pleased with the work I was doing.
On my first day, I went through newspapers from the weekend looking for mentions of my-wardrobe and the company’s competitors, which include Selfridges, ASOS, Browns, Net-a-porter, Matches, and Harvey Nichols. I then learned how to make documentation of all coverage/mentions for my-wardrobe’s records by integrating the my-wardrobe logo in a Word document and print screening the online source from a website or scanning the print source from a magazine or newspaper. Some sources include: InStyle, MarieClaire, Grazia, Cosmopolitan, and DailyMail. I then would save each source of coverage under the correct monthly folders. Later in the afternoon, I retrieved the London Evening Standard from the tube station when it was released to check for coverage. I did some typical intern work like recycling old newspapers, making and arranging an international collage for a bulletin board, which included the U.S. and the Fourth of July (‘murrica spirit at an all-time high), and sorting magazines.
On the second day, I did more documentation of coverage, looking for mentions in the daily released newspapers, and made a list of the number of mentions of my-wardrobe and its competitors in the July issue magazines. I also searched all the fashion websites for coverage and the Evening Standard for coverage again. I hung up some clothes in the store room, too. The hardest task was going to the post office to mail packets. Some packets were going within the UK and some were going to Europe. I told the man helping me at first that they were all going to Europe—I considered the UK as part of Europe by mistake. He was very impatient and rude to me, despite my apologies that I had never done this before (I don’t even know how to use the American post office on my own). I got through it, brought the receipts back to my work, and smiled as wide as the Thames River when I was told I did everything correctly.
On my half day, I essentially did the same tasks as the previous days. I greatly enjoy flipping through newspapers looking for coverage because I get to read a wide variety of headlines in the process. I would never voluntarily read the newspaper at home, so I am becoming more cognizant of world news, especially local London news. I was so surprised to see a headline involving Arizona on my first day; 19 firefighters had been killed in a wildfire located so near to home, which was the biggest fire incident since 9/11. As sad as I felt, I was so grateful to be able to learn about the event in this way. One week at my-wardrobe.com has exposed me to new skills, a fresh environment, and an understanding of how a professional workplace operates. I’m looking forward to the remainder of my placement and the further PR experience I will take away from it.