Meet Olivia Adebo, an Account Manager at Edelman Smithfield.
What does a typical day in the life of an Account Manager on the Financial Communications and Capital Markets team look like?
The variety of client work we do in financial comms is what makes it so interesting – a typical day does not really exist. A lot of what I do is project-based work: transactions, dealing with shareholder activists, other special situations - often each client account is structured a little different. However, there are of course commonalities in the day-to-day execution. Typically, my day is split between client advisory, drafting strategic and communications materials, and working with colleagues on new business opportunities. However, the nature of our work, means flexibility is key – responding to emergent issues and situations is a core part of what I do.
What three skills do you think are essential to fulfil your role?
With the variety of the work we do, I think you develop a lot of different skills, but if I had to narrow it down to three, perhaps universal skills, I would say: the ability to listen critically, asking the right the questions at the right time, and thinking outside of the box. To throw in a bonus, I would also say patience – although that last one is probably a desired, than an as yet acquired skill.
What do you like best about working at Edelman?
Definitely being part of a global business with multiple specialties within it. A lot of my work is cross border, and international, so I am lucky to have gotten the opportunity to work with different offices and colleagues from around the world. The range of expertise and experience across the Edelman network is enormous, and it also means you are always learning.
What are some of the challenges you face in your day-to-day role?
A key one is adaptability – not necessarily a challenge, but definitely a requirement. I work on a very fast-paced team, and we often find ourselves responding to unexpected issues, crises, and urgent requests, that demand a certain amount of flexibility to effectively handle.
I would also say – not having enough hours in the day. Maybe not completely unique to my role, but continuously finding ways to manage time more effectively is a recurring feature.
Describe your working week using 3 emojis
Have 4! In no particular order…
What’s been your most memorable moment at Edelman so far?
I know this is not Edelman specific, but living through a global pandemic feels like the natural choice. When I joined Edelman, almost four years ago, I had not anticipated I would be spending one of them in my apartment. However, the resilience that everyone has shown in the last year has truly been inspiring.
What’s your favourite part of a working day?
The mornings. I have become a morning person out of sheer force of will, but really for me, they represent the promise of what may come. It is kind of like the quiet before the storm - you lay out your plan for the day, set your objectives – and then in many cases, you find your day taken in an unexpected direction. Which, when it comes down to it, is what keeps it interesting.
How do you stay motivated?
I am usually a reasonably competent self-motivator, but I am also very results-driven. It is one of the reasons why I like working on projects - you get to see it through, usually, from start to finish - the work you do is tangible, and the impacts, visible.
What’s your top tip for working from home?
Find structure and take time to do you.
With our home environment becoming our office, and our office now also our home, I find it is very easy to blur the lines between the two, with greater emphasis on “work-life”. I find adding some structure to the week, for example, starting and ending the day with non-work activities, really beneficial, as it creates some cognitive separation between the two.
Did anything surprise you when you joined Edelman?
Definitely the scale of the business. There are so many teams, and offerings that Edelman has, and continues to develop - I am still learning about a lot of them myself, almost four years in. But I also think it is reflective of the company’s emphasis on innovation – the world is continuing to evolve around us, and a willingness to embrace change is critical.
Finally, how do you see your career path developing in the future?
I have used this word a couple of times already, but I really think flexibility is a key feature. No one would have predicted the year we have just had, so just remaining open to the possibility the future brings.