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Thoughts on a Job Shadow.

Posted on Tuesday, January 11, 2011
Category: Social Media
Author: Meghann Theurer


It was interesting having a job shadow all last week. It wasn't long ago that I was an intern here, so I found it interesting that someone wanted to follow and learn from me. I haven't been doing this that long and she had a slew of experts here at Odney to choose from. But of course I'm glad to have had her! I hope that she came out a little more knowledgeable about what we do here at Odney in the social media department.

I remember being about her age and job shadowing Ken Rogers, Opinion Page Editor at the Bismarck Tribune. Granted it was only for about 4 hours but no matter how long you have with a professional, job shadowing is a great opportunity to see what a person in a career really does every day.

Why the Tribune? I had romanticized about being a journalist for a while in school and so I was set up to shadow Mr. Rogers through my advisor. Although I found it fascinating to watch the other reporters argue about what should be the front page news story that day, I found quickly that writing for a newspaper was a lot different than I had imagined. So I closed that door and opened another.

We all tend to get into a routine about our everyday job duties. Having my shadow around was great for me to re-evaluate my job. I had to slow down, talk about what I was doing, and show her things. She asked a lot of great questions and not only do I hope my answers helped her understand better, I found that her questions actually helped me understand my job better!

I have some advice for any young professional thinking of going into social media: Job shadows are great. Internships are better. Keep up on current trends and current social media channels (Facebook, Youtube, Foursquare….) and how consumers are using them. Don't be afraid to ask questions. You will learn more, and the person teaching might just learn something too.


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