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  • Writer's pictureMaria Vandenburg

Closing One Particular Chapter

Updated: Mar 16

My final days at my first full-time job in London are officially coming to a close. It is going to be very weird to wake up tomorrow morning and not go into the office. I wanted to make sure I took a second to reflect upon what I have gained from my time here.

1. I can lead a company-wide initiative.

I have previously managed projects, portfolios, and clients, but this was my first experience managing a project that impacted the entire company.

2. I am capable of presenting to the executive board.

I was expecting this to happen during the second year of my MBA program - however it happened during week 8 of my time at HarperCollins. My boss at the time told me I was just going to be having a "discussion" with them. The ironic part when I look back at it now was that I was so nervous leading up to it, but when I was physically in the room "discussing" GDPR with the board, I felt uncomfortable sitting down. I wanted to stand to fully be present and seen. Who knew? I certainly didn't before this experience.

3. That it's the people you work with and the relationships you build that truly make a project meaningful and fun.

I knew this from past experience but it was reinforced yet again. My favorite part about this particular job was the people that I worked with. My main focus was GDPR - and while I can't say I have a love for European Data Regulations, I can say that I have a significant amount for the GDPR Project Team.

4. Having management support is incredibly important

I had two different managers during my time here. While they had very different management styles, they were similar in terms of support. I always felt like they were there for me to lean on when needed. Although they both gave me the freedom to own my projects, knowing that I had their support enabled my development and growth.

5. Finally, I am so grateful for this whole experience.

I couldn't have asked for a better window into the professional working world of London.  So thank you, to everyone that was a part of it.

Interested in learning more about my personal journey?


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