It’s been two weeks since I completed a 3-month project in Switzerland and returned to London…
My company phone: deactivated.
My company laptop: turned off.
My travel plans this week: none.
Some of the people I knew in Lausanne referred to me as a consultant – a word normally associated with the financial industry and freelance marketers. People that typically come in, fix a problem and then go home.
Instead, I was a consultant (with a PR mindset).
Brought in to help manage a client’s social media channels, give the client more time to focus on larger projects and simultaneously provide the agency time to hire someone in Switzerland.
On a personal level, this opportunity created some challenges – with the language and weekend travel being the toughest. It forced me to make sacrifices with my friends and ultimately, turn down my Team Heathrow volunteer position for the Olympics.
Am I glad I did it? Hell yea.
It gave me a chance to see exactly what the client sees, to feel the pressure they feel and to understand why project briefs and ideas need to change at the last minute. I came to Europe to differentiate myself from my peers in Chicago and this experience will help me do that.
Working in Switzerland allowed me to explore the same country my grandfather worked in decades ago, create some new friendships and work with some absolutely amazing people!! These are the experiences that I’ll tell my kids about and hopefully someday their kids. (I’ll also write about them here. Like Joe the Explorer on Facebook to stay in the loop.)
Do I miss it?
Certain aspects. The people I worked with and met were amazing and exploring the Swiss (and French) culture was fun and eye opening. But it’s a double edge sword but my friends and colleagues in London are equally as awesome and now the Olympics are here, which will provide many stories to tell my kids and grandkids.
So is it time to drop the “Mission Accomplished” banner, fade into the credits and ride off into the sunset?
Not by a long shot. But I know how the Lone Ranger feels as he rides off into the sunset… He’s ready for a nap.