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10 things they do teach you at Fluid

I’ve learnt a lot over the past 8 months at Fluid. My first ‘proper job’ brought some challenges – those 3.30pm finishes feel a long way away now.

But the Fluid team were always willing to help me learn, whether it’s a shortcut for Photoshop, a quick tutorial on Drupal, or just trusting me and giving me the space to learn and face real challenges, I have a lot to thank the Fluid team for.

I’ve done 5 Things They Don’t Teach You At School but what about 10 things they do teach you at Fluid?

That folding 200 origami invitations is hard.

Folding 200 origami invitations in a day felt like a pretty insurmountable task, particularly as when the day began Michelle was the only person who could finish the origami off. But I soon learnt that with teamwork and a good process – scorers, folders and envelope stickers – anything is possible, and also quite fun!

That a seagull flying into a windscreen is not the end of the world.

When a model texts you to say that a seagull has flown into her windscreen and she’ll no longer be able to attend the shoot tomorrow you feel like it’s the end of the world. How will you find another model for tomorrow? Well Dan and Dani’s quick-thinking meant that not only did we have a new model in time, it also taught me that where there is a problem there’s usually a solution you just have to find it.

How to wheel on my chair like a pro.

I have never really been in one fixed team at Fluid which means I’ve spent a lot of my time wheeling around the office to work with different people – whether that’s to prepare for a pitch, head to a breakout room to do a social sprint or just get a quick Drupal tutorial from a member of the web team, collaboration is a huge part of what we do. And I’ve learnt that collaboration almost always improves a project, and usually makes it more fun too!

That dining plates are really heavy.

We consistently go above and beyond for clients – even if that means quickly changing into a uniform and becoming a model if required. This taught me two things: I should never be a waitress, and how best to direct the models because I’ve now been on the other side. Pretty much all of us – including the dogs – have modelled at some point, which highlights everyone’s willingness to get involved and do all they can to please the client, a mentality I will try to take forward into all future work.

How to channel my inner 65-year-old.

We work with many clients in the retirement sector, and at Fluid we really try to get into the mind of the consumer, which for many of our social clients often means channelling our inner 65-year old to find content which will most interest them – I know more about Cheshire in the 50s than I ever thought I would.

That sitting down whilst wearing a VR headset is complicated.

Innovative ideas are being produced daily at Fluid – when I’m struggling for inspiration, I just look at everyone else’s computer screens and there is always something exciting happening to inspire me. Whether that’s Andy’s VR property tour – no the VR chair is not a real chair – or sending a cow to space, there’s always something going on which makes me proud to be a member of Fluid.

That I should really buy a second smart shirt.

My first meeting with Liversage was my first time communicating with clients directly, and after the past 8 months there has been much more of that – my one smart shirt got a lot of use. I’ve learnt how best to communicate with clients, how to run a meeting or training day, when to present an idea and when to offer more of a discussion, and that I really need to buy a second smart shirt.

That ‘who’s that?’ is not the appropriate way to answer the phone.

Luckily the first person to call me at Fluid was Ed, so my ‘who’s that?’ response was not the end of the world – I tell myself it was because I recognised his voice and not because I’m not used to a lack of caller ID. But I quickly learnt the typical phone answering technique, and that taking a message requires you to actually ask the person’s name (politely), and now I can both ring people and answer the phone with confidence – it becomes a necessary skill once you’ve booked a magazine ad or two.

That photoshopping Santa hats is a serious business.

I can’t imagine any other job where I’d be asked to photoshop a Santa hat onto every single member of the company. And I certainly can’t imagine another job where said Santa hat photoshopping would be taken so seriously with head tilt and shadows considered. But with some fun and some more serious tasks my time at Fluid has taught me loads of technical skills that are useful in the non-Santa-hat-photoshopping world, like the use of the Adobe Suite.

That I’m better at Wii bowling than real bowling.

Fluid is a social place, with the Fluidettes and Flents; the frequent social outings, and weekly trips to the wine bar, I’ve not only met some of the best colleagues but the best friends too. But when I found out that 18-year-olds are not allowed the bumpers up, I quickly learnt that my bowling skills were not how I’d remembered them...

Sadly, I’m off to university in September, so I’ll be leaving Fluid – for the time being at least – but I’m sure I will take these life lessons with me in everything I do.