We’re back with another installment of Work From Home Gossip.
Love it or hate it, Work From Home has become a major part of our daily lives for 2020. For those who are used to working in an office, you’re probably missing the usual workplace gossip or calling shotgun on our colleagues’ front seats when we drive to our lunch spots. But, we haven’t thought about how this affects freelancers.
We might assume the Work From Home culture has always been part of freelancers’ lives. Therefore, it doesn’t affect them at all right? Well, let’s find what does our Ads Manager, Ginn, who has been freelancing for years, have to say?
Moreover, let’s find out if he has any tips and tricks for us to stay productive at home and what did he wish to be when he was growing up. And, of course, how much does he enjoy doing what he’s doing.
As a digital marketer, if you don’t go out and meet people, it can be a lonely job. It’s just me and my laptop most of the time. Being able to connect to everyone in the team helps tremendously. Knowing that there are team members to support you every now and then makes my life more entertaining.
Hey I’m Ginn. I’m the Ads Manager in Chatbot Malaysia. I’m helping our clients in managing their advertisements and campaigns according to our plan in building their businesses. I joined CM five months ago. Initially, I started as a copywriter but with how things have changed and evolved over the past few months, I moved to my current role as an Ads Manager.
Hey Ginn! How are you staying productive at home all this while?
Despite the fact that I've been freelancing for a while, I don't think I'm very productive at home because I used to go to a cafe and work.
So, at home, I would just lock my door and tell my wife she's on her own. (We won’t tell your wife. Wink...). I don’t think I have any amazing tips apart from checking your schedule in advance and balancing things out. But, having a daily schedule and trying to accomplish all of the daily goals definitely help.
And, with our team, it’s about balancing each other’s needs. I just have to be upfront with things I struggle with and would need support. We do understand each other when it comes to that.
Tell me a fun fact about you.
When I’m not occupied with work, I spend time in the kitchen to relieve my stress. In other words, I cook. Especially amid the MCO, there are a few videos which filmed some people who have no clue on how to cook and it’s funny to me.
So, you’re a pretty good chef at home.
It’s one of the things I started probably at 9 or 10 years old. I cooked instant noodles for the first time when I was 7.
What did you want to be when you were growing up?
Truth to be told, I wanted to be a teacher when I was 7. Then, when science and technology
became interesting to me, I wanted to be a scientist. At 15 or 16 years old, when I was picking to go for science or arts, I wanted to be an engineer, psychologist and chef. Just lots of different things.
And, how did it pan out for you before ending up with Chatbot Malaysia? How much do you enjoy doing what you're doing now?
That’s probably why I turned into a digital marketer from an engineer. Things changed!
Being in a MNC and in a technical role, when you start to feel like it’s not your calling. You could either suck it up and stay there for the next 20 years or make a drastic change. I made a change so I’m doing what I’m doing now.
How much do you enjoy doing what you're doing now?
Tremendously fun. Number one is I get to talk to a lot of business owners about their challenges and evaluate how I could actually use marketing knowledge to help them. Notably, some of my past clients were in the training industry, education and e-commerce.
I’ve come to realize different businesses are the same in principle. The problems that they (business owners) face generally are quite similar. One similarity I observed is many of them don’t enjoy doing marketing. So, it's good news for us and we have a mission to help other businesses to do exactly that.
What do you do for fun outside of work?
When you're 35 and married with a child, you don't have too much time for myself. I don’t have too much time for entertainment. I can’t even remember the last time I went to a movie in the cinema. Whenever I’m free, I'm either reading or sleeping.
What do you usually read?
I read a lot about marketing and I have quite a few cookbooks. Cookbooks are fun to me. Even though I might not always be able to cook [with the recipes], it’s fun to have a look at which recipes would work and which wouldn’t. So, at least I could try some of them out when I’m free.
Other than that, it’s literally having my daughter running around the house and I don’t have my free time anymore. That’s fun as well but it’s also my obligation. (Sarcastic laughter)
How has working in Chatbot Malaysia allowed you to be your true self?
Well, being in the company now, I get to work with six other interesting people on a daily basis. And, they have never failed to keep me sane. The positivity and creativity which goes around the team helps a lot.
As a digital marketer, if you don’t go out and meet people, it can be a lonely job. It’s just me and my laptop most of the time. Similar to how people feel amid the MCO. Being able to connect to everyone in the team helps tremendously. Knowing that there are team members to support you every now and then makes my life more entertaining.
Describe your perfect work environment.
A place with good WiFi connection and a laptop with decent specs. And clarification of our daily goals.
That’s a very practical answer! How does a perfect team look like to you?
The most important thing is going to be team chemistry. So, we could talk together and make inside jokes about each other. Basically, that keeps our team going. As our team is small and lean, everyone knowing what needs to be done and being able to execute them in a short amount of time, it is a big plus. And, I’m glad to be working with a team like this.
Tell me about your ideal area of interest here. How different it is from your current key areas of responsibility?
My area of responsibilities is pretty small. After receiving the information [from our clients], I set up the ads. In a nutshell, that’s about it. But, of course in between [my usual tasks], there are a lot of discussions and alignments going on with the clients as ultimately we’re dealing with their money. So, being responsible is definitely the key [to my area].
For me, the ideal outcome is I get to expand my role a little more. To complete the entire ad cycle. After all, Chabot Malaysia is about chatbots so I hope to look more into that area. Definitely not looking into Graphic Design. I wish to look more into the artistic sides of the technical bits. Definitely not coding, I can’t do that to save my life!
WHY are doing what you're doing?
To put food on the table! The truth is I’m doing this to pay bills. But, being able to add some skills is important too. That’s the reason I look more into Ads Management. So, if one day Facebook went down like how it was for Friendster.
In your own words, what sort of impact are you making in the team?
Initially, I’m just filling up the capacity of the team so Carliff could focus on other areas. He could have done it himself but he has to focus on something else. So, the team could grow.
I’m sure he’s glad to have you taking on this role due to your expertise and it’s definitely more than just taking some load off his back. So, tell us more about that expertise and how it ultimately helps us and also our clients.
Yea, I do think I’m good at what I’m doing [in Facebook Ads]. In terms of impact to the clients, they would be able to manage their [Facebook] pages better. The performance of the ads is definitely going to be better [when we manage it for them]. Also, we could propose different strategies or approaches for our clients based on different scenarios.
Tell me or show me about something that you're really proud of.
Uhm... my countless marketing books! (Which is sitting right beside Ginn). I collected these over the span of six years.
Would like to know more about our amazing team? Check out the interview with our Customer Service Representative, Asyikin.
Would like to know more about what our friends are up to amid MCO? You could check out our blog for the interviews with our clients and how they are managing their business amid the challenging MCO period.
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