The number 18 means life, in Hebrew. Its form in Arabic is etched into the palm of your right hand. It symbolized blood relation to ancient Romans; in the U.S. it marks the time we come of age. Indeed, this mathematically semi-perfect number holds significance for people the world round, including me.
I have built a rewarding career over 18 years at Waggener Edstrom. After college, I moved to the Oregon coast to try to be a writer; I learned I was a better editor. My first day back in Portland, I landed a temp gig at WE (back when it was on Macadam Ave.), entering hard-copy edits into a word processor and stuffing press kits in the shipping room (Bill Gates was about to introduce Windows 95 to the tune of “Start Me Up”).
Things happen fast here. Within a month, I moved from temp to full-time production coordinator, within a year the editing team manager created an editorial assistant role for me, and within another year I had trained on the job well enough to be promoted to copy editor. That manager (my still-dear friend and now-Londoner Arran Riddle) was the first of many agency leaders who compensated my eagerness to learn and try new things with opportunities both educational and daunting.
I’ve had the chance to watch the world and the way we communicate change from the vantage of a single company that has consistently helped clients tell their stories with impact. Milestones of my experience would make a powerful time-lapse video.
I’ve remained at WE because there is always something new to do that requires creativity and learning. And every time I am scared to take on a new challenge, someone spurs me on and has my back. The agency has never stopped being a serious playground for discovering, shaping and executing on the next way to keep our clients ahead in their communications.
Case in point: I’m celebrating my 18th year as we launch Content360, a new content marketing product designed to bring the power of content full circle by ensuring any organization’s content efforts are effective, engaging and helping solve a business problem.
This is just the latest example of the significant innovations I feel fortunate to be a part of at WE. I’m proud to have come of age here. Happy 30th, WE, and thank you for keeping me curious!
(image © Splicr)