Ivy Hui, BCom’18 currently lives in Hong Kong and works as a Marketing Management Trainee for Unilever. Ivy describes her experience moving to Hong Kong and navigating the change from academia to the corporate field.
Tell us about your role
As a Marketing Management Trainee, I am responsible for managing brands in different categories. These range from foods and beverages to personal care categories. The role is also heavily cross-functional, leading projects working with copious departments like sales, supply chain, finance, and more. The role itself is more than just managing campaigns and rolling out new products, but also budget and stock planning, media and creative agency coordination, stakeholder management, and more.
Describe a situation where you have had to navigate change in your career
Preparing for my graduation at Sauder School of Business, I was exploring opportunities abroad – mainly in Asia regions. I sought out internships in Taiwan during my third year, exchange during my fourth, and graduating with a post-graduate job in Hong Kong. I intended to seek change as I believed change inspires growth. During my last term, I was flying back and forth between Hong Kong and Vancouver to complete the interview stages and start my post-graduate job just weeks after my graduation.
What did you learn about yourself from that experience?
Moving to a new city by myself and moving in just a span of a week from Vancouver to Hong Kong was a rewarding but bumpy experience. In a good way, I was able to grasp a vast variety of experiences at an earlier stage than a lot of recent graduates. I also become heavily independent personally and financially. However, I had not given myself adequate time to adapt to a new culture, a new city, a new post-graduate life. I was able to notice this before I was too caught up with my career.
Do you have any advice for someone who is experiencing change in their career?
Prepare yourself via in-depth research, including surface and beneath-the-surface issues. For instance, you should research more than just about the cost of living, but also about the difference in culture. Join as many events and create a community in a new city. Friends can help build a bond with the city and making it more memorable. Finally, as busy as you get, do not forget to eat well and exercise. A simple home-cooked meal and a walk around the block would suffice!
What opportunities arose from navigating change?
My ambitiousness working abroad alone was definitely noticed by my firm. Colleagues admired that I left family to pursue a career of my own in a city I have never been in. Hence, I was offered more opportunities to represent the firm and also transfer to their headquarters. It felt good to be acknowledged and recognized for my performance beyond my job!