Monday, August 07, 2006

So you're a Brand Contact intern, eh?

What surprised me most about LS was the Brand Contact Department. The reason it surprised me is because 1) I’d never heard of such a department title, and 2) I was unaware I was going to be a part of it! Throughout the interview process I was always told that I possibly had the qualifications for an account services intern, so naturally that’s the position I would interview for. I ended up receiving the internship (YAY!) and when the topic came up with fellow friends and family I would always say, “I am going to be an account services intern” and then smile. When they asked what that encompassed, I would explain, and then smile. Well, I got to LS and quickly noticed my title: Account Service/ Brand Contact Intern. Hmm? I thought, what does this mean? Sort of puzzled and kind of nervous, I went with the flow and by the second day or so I was completely filled in. Simply put, the Brand Contact Department is another name for a Media Department! Here at LS we call it Brand Contact because it fuses Research, Account Planning and Media all in one. Cool, huh? I was extremely excited and smiling bigger than before. It has turned out to be a perfect fit for me; I do not think I could have picked a better position for myself. Topics of media such as “the latest trends in media” and “alternative media” just fascinate me. I love anything that has to do with consumer behavior and research in general. I’m constantly learning new things because of the broad range of assignments I’ve been given. I can honestly say I did not think this internship was going to be as beneficial as it has already turned out to be. You never know what’s going to happen next, here at LS.

~ Lucia B.

Is "funny-ness" a word?

Hmm… something that surprised me at LS… Well, I’m surprised I get so nervous writing this blog. I don't want to write something that's not reflective of me and I mean, I’m the copywriting intern. I work in the Creative department and decorate my office with ads that I’ve done that would never get approved because of my humor. So now people have certain expectations of my level of "funny-ness," if you will. Which brings me to this blog: I feel as if the other interns are standing behind me saying “make me laugh, clown, it's your job” - which is why I’ve been working on this for almost an hour.

Oh, and if this didn't make you laugh, I'll spend two hours on this next time. My mentor would love that.

~ Samantha A.

Expect the unexpected

Before the start of the summer internship at Liggett Stashower, I had a lot of expectations about what the internship might entail, the employees and the other interns. There have been a lot of things that have surprised me. One pleasant surprise has been the amount of quality work that I’ve been assigned. Hearing about some of my friends’ internship experiences, they always talk about how they spend their afternoons aimlessly playing on the computer or getting extremely excited to see a new E-mail in their inbox. At Liggett, they really put their interns to use. I have learned to multi-task and get organized because sometimes many tasks are given to me at once. The hours in the day really fly by, and I feel like my work is appreciated by the agency.

On another note, I have gained an arch nemesis during my time here; it is something that I never expected. We never seem to get along when I ask it to do things, and it always has a problem with everything I do. When I need it to perform a simple task it has to be difficult - we are officially not friends anymore. So, I am thoroughly surprised that the seemingly simple copy machine is not so simple.

~ Lauren S.

Surprise surprise!

So maybe the name Kenny Crumpton doesn’t mean much to you, but as a personal fan of this fun-loving news reporter since my days in high school, I was shocked when I recently got the chance to meet him! As PR interns, Lauren and I have been afforded many opportunities to participate in everything from media training sessions and new business meetings to tagging along with account coordinators to meet with local reporters. Overall, (aside from meeting Kenny and a few other local stars) I never expected to be a part of so many important agency functions.

I mean call me sentimental, but these unexpected opportunities have really put my Liggett internship experience in perspective and helped me realize the value of my long hours and hard work. Most importantly, I’ve gained boasting rights among my group of friends, who unfortunately call it a “good day” at their internships when they’re asked to make a power point slide.

~ Brittany Y.

Exceeding expectations

What did I not expect coming into the internship? I didn't expect to be working on as much client work as I have been. I thought I would be working on intern projects most of the time, but actually, its been hard to find time to work on them. Its great to see work you’ve assisted with being sent to clients for approval. I've also learned what it is like to work as a team in a creative environment. In school, I've done most of my projects all myself. Here, I get to work with writers and art directors to get work done.

~ Matt S.

Coursework only paints half the picture...

One thing that surprised me when I started working at Liggett Stashower was how tightly all the other departments were tied to the finance department. Since getting jobs done for our clients often involves using other vendors, the finance department is crucial in making sure that the payments for every vendor (which are substantial in number) get out on time to the right place. It is a much different environment than what my accounting classes have lead me to believe.

Accounting classes prepare you by talking about journal entries, general ledgers, and financial statements. This is only a small part of what actually happens in finance. Computer systems help to automatically post journal entries and take care of the ledgers without the need to prepare the entries one by one. They are a necessity, since vendors and clients often get in contact with us over various issues with the billing, and preparing journal entries while interacting with the vendors and clients would be a difficult task. In short, accounting classes help you understand the basics, but until you become part of a company, it is impossible to see the whole picture.
Bob M.

Positive team experience

In my experience, when eight very unique, ambitious and talented people come together to form a group, there’s bound to be drama. No one is used to taking a back seat and allowing others to lead them, and the group spends more time “storming” than “performing” (borrowed from one of our executive lunches).

I was pleasantly surprised to find that this scenario wasn’t at all applicable to our 2006 intern class. Granted, we’ve had a few disagreements amongst ourselves and struggled to find our place within the group, but overall, every day is more fun and enjoyable as a direct result of our group. There’s such an amazing mix of personalities within the group of interns, and you never know who’s going to say what next and catch the group off guard. Whether it’s playing pool during lunch or just chatting at a meeting, the harmonious blend of our ideas and personalities is a constant surprise.

~ Jessica H.

They mean it when they say creative agency

With Liggett being an ad agency, I expected the office to have a creative flavor, but did not know to what degree. Being at Liggett for nearly a month now, the office “decorations" and atmosphere continue to release a surprising amount of creativity. Both the interns and employees have grown accustomed to the new wall colors throughout the office. The wall behind me has taken on a green shade while the wall to my front has been transformed to teal. Our intern meeting room has gone from having a white ring around it to a shade of blue, and the nearby wall with Liggett ads has also gone from an off-white to a chocolate brown. In addition, I had never before seen an employee lounge with a pool table, nerf guns, and a karaoke microphone. As if bright-colored walls and the employee lounge haven’t hinted enough at the creative environment here at Liggett, themed rooms such as the Sushi and Zen rooms also provide outlets for creative thought.

~ Ben F.