Posted 25.08.17 by prhcareers
Hi Hana, you attended our JobHack in Norwich this summer. What attracted you to apply?
I applied to JobHack to learn a bit more about the publishing industry. I was already pretty set on pursuing a career in publishing and whilst I knew a little (emphasis on little) I wanted to get to know about the different sectors and what specific roles entailed in more detail. Before I applied I did a bit of research into the programme, reading some blog posts and articles that had been written by other people who had attended previous sessions.
The interactive workshops really appealed to me too as they seemed like a fun way to gain a truthful insight into different tasks associated with each sector. It was the recruitment workshop that really drew me in. As a recent graduate I definitely need all the advice and tips on how to get a job and having that role reversal where all of a sudden you are on the inside reading and scrutinising CVs and cover letters seemed like such an invaluable opportunity to find out exactly what publishing houses look for in a job application.
What did you get involved with on the day and who did you meet?
We got the chance to take part in some amazing workshops; coming up with and pitching an idea for a new book, creating a marketing campaign, and also re-designing the cover of Roald Dahl’s The BFG according to a brief. The whole day was really engaging and interactive and the tasks made us think and put our creativity to use rather than just being spoken at.
We also got to meet and chat to people from a variety of roles and Penguin Random House divisions. Stephanie Naulls from Ebury’s marketing team was so enthusiastic and energetic about what she did, which was really inspiring. We also got to meet Tom Monson, an editorial assistant at Viking, who spoke about how he ended up at Penguin Random House after a work experience placement at another publishing house (I’m pretty sure we all wanted to be him!). Everyone who we spoke to was so friendly and willing to offer any advice they could.
Would you recommend JobHack?
Definitely! I would recommend JobHack to anyone who has contemplated going into publishing, whether it is a fleeting thought or a certain career path. You learn so much just from a single day and who wouldn’t want to be part of something run by one of the biggest names in publishing?! Also #cake #pops.
What were your favourite parts of JobHack?
I actually really enjoyed the networking aspect of the entire day. When I first found out there was going to be a networking opportunity I Freaked. Out. because the whole concept of networking, for some reason, fills me with dread (maybe it’s the worry of having awkward conversation… or no conversation at all). But turns out it really wasn’t that bad – everyone was really easy and interesting to talk to and it was also amazing to see how young everyone was!
What one thing did you learn that gave you an insight into publishing?
I learnt that it’s not necessarily about who you know, but what you know.
This may sound obvious but having skills that are transferrable to the area of publishing you want to go into are what will get you there. Listening to everyone’s presentations about their journey into publishing taught me this as I found that they hadn’t all done work experience placements or internships with big publishing names and had still managed to become part of the Penguin Random House team.
Having the passion, creativity, and energy for whatever position you want to go into will certainly help – and everyone we met at Penguin Random House had plenty of this for what they do!
What’s next for you? Have you applied to any other publishing opportunities?
JobHack cemented publishing as the career path for me and inspired me to go for it! I have a work experience placement lined up for later in August at a children’s publishing house to learn even more about the publishing world and build upon what Penguin Random House taught us!
If you’re interested in attending JobHack or finding out more about it, take a look at our JobHack website.