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Applaud our new hire! Elyse is the newest addition to the SmashFly team as our Content Strategist. She’ll tell you more.

What should we know about you?

Born and raised in Chicago, I’m an avid sports fan, can handle the cold and love me some pizza. I currently live outside of Nashville, TN with my boyfriend and our English bulldog puppy, Ceiba (name disclaimer: it’s an enormous white tree we saw while in Belize). I graduated with a journalism degree from University of Illinois in Champaign (I-L-L!) where I put my obsession for reading and writing to good use. When I’m not trying to hit my goal of a book a month in 2015 (I’m exceeding it right now with book #6), I’m probably tackling another TV series on Netflix (currently, House of Cards) or researching our next great travel destination.

 

Why SmashFly, and why content strategy?

Simply, I felt invigorated by the role and the people. I looked at SmashFly as a challenge and an adventure―the industry is new to me, the market is new to me, but I’m confident in the role I’m taking. When I interviewed, I felt 100% on the same page as my now-colleagues. I wanted to make change and I wanted to learn―and I can do both here.

And why content? Out of college, I veered off from my dream of writing for a magazine into the agency world. And now, I am so pumped to see what marketing is morphing into: a more transparent, valuable brand voice and perspective that provides two-way conversation and value to its audience, whether education, emotion, entertainment, etc. Content is the only way to do that. I feel like my particular role matters in the marketing world more than ever before. It’s out of my head into the hands of the people who our business depends on. And it’s a little bit of psychology: what REALLY matters to X person in X situation?

 

The last thing you read:

Wild by Cheryl Strayed. It was one of the most transparent, mesmerizing and unbelievable books I’ve read―I laughed out loud and shed tears.

 

What’s so cool about working for a startup?

Even in just a few weeks, I feel such a strong vibe and culture. Everyone is ambitious, energized, collaborative, encouraging. Every team member wants to be a part of making the company exceptional―they all want to make their mark and provide tremendous results, while helping their teammates do the same. It’s an unstoppable characteristic. On top of that, the perspective on the work environment is awesome. Everyone pulls their weight, everyone is independent and hard-working, so you don’t have to worry about clocked hours, micromanagement or being scared of the CEO (he’s awesome by the way).

 

What’s the weirdest dream you’ve ever had?

Be prepared: I have carried this dream around with me since I was a kid and have NEVER forgotten it. It is bizarre, slightly frightening and 100% not made up. Don’t judge me.

I am dropped into the middle of a fancy party in an amazing mansion in the middle of nowhere, with tons of outdoor seating, fountains, hanging lights and greenery. Beautiful people everywhere, waiters with silver platters, black tie attire – the whole shebang. Martin Short is hosting the party, bopping around with his typical goofy smirk and directing waiters in an exaggerated accent (French perhaps?). I’m not participating in the party, more so just wandering around unnoticed, when I hear shrieking, screaming, glass shattering, ground rumbling, crowd stampeding sounds encompassing the grounds. I look up, and it’s a T-Rex going haywire and exerting its dominance over minuscule men in penguin suits, crushing trees and breaking eardrums. For some reason, everyone starts looking at me, as if I somehow know how to stop the dino from killing us all. Yet I feel mysteriously drawn to the T-Rex, and as I get closer, ready to stab it with some sharp object that luckily appeared out of nowhere, I see its face. And it has the face of my dad [insert some type of Freud psychobabble]. Everyone is shouting and heckling me to kill it, and after some quick deliberation that the face is just some mystical defense mechanism the dinosaur has to confuse me, I kill it.

I’d like to credit watching Jurassic Park and Father of the Bride in the same night, but I can’t say for certain that happened.

 

Whose position at SmashFly do you envy most?

At just a few weeks in, I probably envy Director of Marketing Chris Brablc the most because he knows EVERYTHING. Being new to the industry, I am purely envious of knowledge. He is such a wealth of information and knows the HCM space and Recruitment Marketing frontier exceptionally well.

But without the practicality factor, I have always wanted to understand software development and coding. It’s genius. I am in awe of those who can create a beautiful, functioning, life-changing interface or program out of (what is to me) random characters.

 

Follow Elyse on Twitter @ElyseSchmidt.

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