Catherine started out her career as a journalist working for local weekly newspapers and after about three years left to become a copywriter at Liverpool Culture Company (LCC) – the organisation responsible for delivering Liverpool European Capital of Culture 2008. It was only a six-month contract so although it was a risk for her, it was also a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Turns out it was a risk that worked out perfectly in enabling Catherine’s career, as she went on to stay there for three years doing different roles including project coordinator, marketing assistant, and web editor. Getting a little taste of everything. It was never in Catherine’s plan to get into digital, it was more of a “happy accident” she says. “I loved it that much that I progressed down that route.”
From LCC, she spent a short time at the University of Liverpool working as a web communications officer, then five years at Trinity Mirror as digital marketing manager for their UK regional and national newspaper websites. It was in 2013 when she leaned over into the agency side, taking an opportunity as a senior digital planner at Rippleffect (now Reading Room), and she was soon promoted to head of the department. Three years after, she moved to Mando as a Strategy Consultant.
A role that might unfamiliar to some, although they’re fundamental when it comes to combining business and digital, and ensuring that what is built is helping to achieve client’s business objectives. Strategists tend to be T-shaped employee, meaning they know enough about each digital discipline to identify opportunities, but when it comes to planning the detail, then that’s when they bring in specialists in those areas. Strategists are a well-organised lot with an eye for detail, and often have an interest in learning about different sectors.
As a Strategy Consultant at Mando, Catherine works with a number of different organisations in the financial, utilities and manufacturing sectors and spends most of her time mining analytics data and looking at her clients’ competitors to understand what changes they can put in place to help improve their performance. What makes Catherine tick most is the fact Mando has a fast paced environment where no two days are the same… There are days where she will spend most of her time working with a breadth of different businesses, helping them to shape their digital presence. On other days, she will be supporting new business development by working on proposals and pitches for new clients.
While the title may be daunting, there’s something very compelling about Strategists that’s not often spoken about when it comes to roles inside the creative and digital industry. Catherine’s experience not only presents adventure and willingness to continue trying something new but it also shows how those experiences are what have shaped her into becoming a leading Strategist that she is today.
When we asked Catherine what advice she would give to those interested in strategy and are considering a career in it, her response was “work hard, make the most of every opportunity no matter how small, and give your best. And more specifically in terms of strategy, get experience of a range of different disciplines and sectors.”
Interested in working for Mando and joining Catherine? They’re looking for a Web Analyst to join their team.