Emily Do is the Events & Marketing Manager at Commission Factory, where she works on PR & communications, event management, marketing strategy, and more for the APAC region.
1) To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your career background and current role?
I started my career as a sales executive for an affiliate network called Webgains, which was my introduction into the affiliate marketing channel and the digital marketing world.
I had the opportunity to work in the U.S as part of the company’s expansion plan and spent two years working as a publisher manager at the end of my time with them.
From an affiliate manager at a student-focused publisher site, a program marketing manager for an agency, and digital performance director for an agency in Australia, I have been lucky enough to see the affiliate channel from almost all sides and in different markets.
A year and a half ago, I decided I wanted a new challenge. I wanted to move away from account management and client services and use my experience from my previous roles in a marketing function within the affiliate marketing channel.
I was lucky enough that Commission Factory was open to having me on board and I am now the Events and Marketing Manager for Commission Factory in APAC.
I manage everything from PR & communications, event management, supporting the client services and commercial team and overall marketing strategy for APAC.
2) What does a day in the life of you look like? Can you take us through a recent workday?
No two days are the same, which is one of the things I love about my role. I always start my day with a morning workout before I kick off my working day at 8 am.
I will take a day from last week as an example. Before I dove into any emails, I set myself up for the day by checking my schedule and planning my tasks in my calendar.
At mid-morning, I had a meeting with the management team about the different marketing campaigns and upcoming activities and projects. I am responsible for the set-up of our webinars, from sound and video check to a green screen set-up.
Last week we participated in an industry webinar. After a hearty lunch, I managed our social media channels and blog and coordinated with the SEO team.
In the afternoon, I always wrap up outstanding action points and emails and set myself up for the next day. Finally, I ended the day with a call with the Awin Global team in the UK.
3) Does your current role allow for flexible or remote working? If so, how does that fit into your life and routine?
I am fortunate that Commission Factory embraced both flexible working hours and remote work before the pandemic hit. Therefore, it was easy to transition from part-time to a full-time working from home set-up.
I am a massive advocate of remote working and flexible hours. As an early bird, I can start my day with a virtual workout with mates, followed by a walk and be at my desk as early as 8 am, which suits me perfectly. It means that I can make the most of my working day when I am the most productive and enjoy the afternoons, especially now that it is almost summer.
Remote working and flexible hours have meant people can fit their personal lives, commitments and hobbies around their working day.
4) What does work-life balance mean to you, and how do you work to achieve that goal?
A work-life balance means being present and being able to prioritise what you see as crucial in work or your personal life and avoiding a burnout.
I think a work-life balance is firstly down to the company. A great company is one that is continually striving to improve employees’ health and well-being and do the best by them.
I think Commission Factory does precisely that. They have health and well-being workshops, fortnightly movie nights, afternoon yoga and an early Friday finish. They even give employees a holiday allowance to encourage us to leave the laptop at home and unwind on holiday.
Outside of work hours, Commission Factory is great at bringing the team together through team sports (cricket, football and golf), whether playing, spectating or sharing a drink or two. The team also has fortnightly food-related events, such as a fortnightly Chicken Schnitzel or roast dinner lunches on the weekend.
I believe we are also responsible for striking a work-life balance, and it is something I am continually working on. I think it is worth remembering to be kind to ourselves after a tough day at work, to make sure you draw a line between work and personal time, especially if you are working at home.
During the lockdown, quality sleep and time to recharge, rather than always on-the-go, made all the difference.
Simply listening to your body when it needs rest, exercise and self-care will go a long way, and balance for me is looking at all aspects of my life and not overdoing any of it. Even too much of a good thing can be bad.
5) In the past 12 months, have you started or stopped any routines or habits to change your life?
I have always been a bit of a health fanatic, and as gyms were closed during the lockdown, my friends and I decided to do virtual workouts at 6.30 am Monday to Friday.
It was a great way to stay connected with friends and get a daily exercise in. Eight months later, we are still doing virtual workouts, and it has never been easier than merely switching our computers on.
On the socialising front, I made it a habit to check in with friends over Zoom, most of the time with a drink in hand I must admit. I think difficult times make you appreciate how much we all need human contact and how it is essential to stay connected with loved ones and check in on them.
The one change that has made an enormous difference is sleeping earlier. I have never had issues sleeping, and I happily slept four to five hours a day pre-COVID and felt refreshed.
However, during the lockdown, I got into a habit of going to bed earlier and felt the benefits of extra hours of sleep tenfold. Lockdown made me realise you can form healthy habits, and it is simply a case of starting something and seeing what works for you.
6) Do you have any favourite books, podcasts or newsletters that you’d like to recommend?
I love reading and listening to podcasts and I find it a great way to unwind. With so much great content and books out there, my recommendations for books and podcasts are quite varied.
- Bad Science
- Why We Sleep
- Norwegian Wood
- The Great Gatsby
- The Rosie Project
- Salmon Fishing In The Yemen
7) Are there any products, gadgets or apps that you can’t live without?
I have a Fitbit watch to track my sleep, general health and activity statistics. It also allows me to do fitness challenges with my friends.
Being a bit of a data geek and always looking to maintain a healthy lifestyle, I love that the Fitbit tracks my fitness progress and the data it provides. To accompany my fitness tracker, I also use MyFitnessPal to track my food intake and make sure that I have a balanced diet.
I am a massive fan of Spotify. During the lockdown, I found it was a great way to fill the buzz I was missing from the office, although it was not quite the same. From podcasts, chill-out music or comedy shows, it is a great way to either set you up for the day or get you through the day or task, especially if you are working from home.
8) If you could read an interview about work-life balance by anyone, who would that be?
I think right now the person I would love to read about is Jacinda Ardern. She can juggle family life, keep her composure and cool during the pandemic and run a country with such grace.
9) Do you have any last thoughts on work, life or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?
I think it is important to be kind to yourself and make sure you have been actively working on having a work-life balance. I recommend planning a realistic working day or week for yourself to avoid an unnecessarily hectic week and to help prevent a burnout.
Avoid filling your day with back-to-back meetings or Zoom calls. Carve out time in your day to allow for follow-ups or to focus on other tasks. Schedule virtual coffee breaks with colleagues or time away from your desk or go for a walk, allowing for downtime.
I think making sure you look after your body, mind and soul (as cheesy as that sounds) will help strike that balance, as well as prioritising what is most important in all aspects of your life.
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