A Job Where You Learn Something New Every Day
My primary goal after college was to enter a working environment where I would continue to learn something new every day. Like many international students, I embody this quintessentially millennial trait to a heightened degree – many of us are true neophiliacs, craving constant exposure to new things. At 18 years of age, or even earlier for some of us, we decided for one reason or another to drop ourselves into an entirely new cultural context, to experience and to learn about the world beyond the one we'd grown up in.
During my job hunt, I experienced a few major challenges. The first was creating a consistent narrative out of the myriad of experiences that I’ve had in my life. How would I draw a connection between going on an archaeological dig, and interning in an embassy? The second was finding a company that encouraged my thirst for learning and enabled me to quench it in my day-to-day job. Somehow neither were a problem when it came to AlphaSights. AlphaSights looks for people who are interesting, who are hungry to learn, and are quickly comfortable with new material. But I quickly found that loving "the new" and being effective in a commercial environment characterized by it are two entirely different things.
At AlphaSights, the emphasis is on being quick and being effective. The hunger is a huge part of this. I can’t enumerate the lessons I’ve learned in persuasive communication in the short time I’ve been here, and this was something I thought I was already decent at before starting work. The soft skills gained bleed into your daily life in ways you don’t expect. Sure, our day-job is to source expertise, connecting our clients with knowledge in different ways. What this really imbues is a strange interest in everything and anything people do – I find myself able to engage absolute strangers in detailed conversations about their obscure jobs in random industries. The power of this should not be underestimated at social engagements in New York City.
As an associate on the Corporate Segment at AlphaSights, I work on projects with corporations that shape the world we live in. As I'm learning to to parse through knowledge effectively, I'm made to feel a part of impactful work, and am being exposed to things that are pretty darn cool. As nebulous a goal as it was to want to "learn something new every day", I think it's pretty safe to say I achieved it, and then some.
Serena joined AlphaSights in September of 2014 and serves as an Associate on our Corporate segment.