A Dublin native, I met June and her team members at the “Night Summit” as I wandered around looking for real Irish food. Originally thinking fish and chips, June quickly explained that was more British than Irish and steered our group to a traditional Irish pub called The Harry Lemon. She recommended their Guinness pie and as I sat devouring it, our conversation turned towards Ireland, her travels abroad, work and the conference itself.
Though June was born and raised in Ireland, while at the University of Limerick she found herself studying Applied Languages and Business which required a year of study abroad. So in 2007 she made the decision to work a half year in France and study for a half year in Spain. When she returned to Ireland at the end of the year it was bittersweet and she knew that a time would come when she would live abroad again.
Fast forward to 2012. Looking for adventure, June set her horizons on somewhere a bit further than mainland Europe. With her passion for Spanish (which she’d studied in university) South America was a natural choice. She also had some friends living in Chile and knew that the startup scene was strong in Santiago so she might be able to find a job.
So she packed her bags for the trip of a lifetime. “I had one of the most wonderful years both from a work and personal point of view. I developed my career with Memeoirs as Community Manager and took some time to travel in between. I climbed Machu Picchu, had fun on the salt flats in Bolivia and strolled around the desert in Chile. I topped my year off hiking then sledding down an active volcano in Pucon.”
And while she’s back in Dublin now, its almost as though she’s still abroad with the extreme diversity of the city’s population which includes people from all over the world. Perhaps it is this mix of people and ideas that is quickly transforming Ireland into a hub for entrepreneurship and innovation. It’s certainly helped by Paddy Cosgrave‘s Web Summit. Fresh from his talk, I can sense the pride in June’s voice as she talks about Paddy and how far he’s brought the conference from year one. The first Web Summit saw just 400 attendees and this year’s fourth iteration is said to have brought 20,000 people to the conference. “That’s a huge achievement for the founders and for Ireland, actually,” says June.
Our talk turns to Ireland and things to do around the city. Funnily enough, June had visited the Guinness Storehouse for the first time just days prior but immediately recommended it because of its importance to the culture as well as the fantastic views of the city from their Gravity Bar.
Mentioning that I was staying near St. Stephen’s Green, she recommended it not just for its beauty but the ability to learn about important figures in Irish history due to the gigantic statues scattered around the park.
Her third recommendation was a trip to Grafton street, the biggest shopping street in Dublin. “The Christmas lights will be turned on there this week and I can’t wait to soak up the excitement and hot chocolate on sale there!”
Then, since we’re both Community Managers our conversation finally turns to work. For June, as for me, every day is different. Some days she’s writing content for the company blog, next she’s conversing with the company’s PR team. Throughout the day she uses social media to spread awareness for Memeoirs which allows you to create a physical book (in hardcover or paperback) from your emails, Facebook messages or WhatsApp conversations. Working with a startup and a small team, there’s no time to get bored. “Dealing directly with the owners of the company every day allows me to have a bigger picture not just of marketing but of the business as a whole. I’m constantly developing a plethora of skills.”
How did you hear of about.me and what made you sign up for it?
When I completed my internships in 2010, I explored different ways to build and develop my online profile. I joined LinkedIn, wrote some guest articles and signed up for about.me. I knew it was an asset to my career as it helped me to be seen online plus it looked quite snazzy without loads of editing.
What’s your favorite feature on the platform?
I love the Backstory as again, it doesn’t require loads of editing however a clear message can be created of one’s career to date. I like the layout and the fact that it’s not too in your face. If someone wants to scroll to it, they can. In any event, a clear idea of one’s personality can be created in the bio.
Have you used about.me to connect with others on the platform?
I have several contacts from when I was abroad so I find it very useful to connect with them, see what they’re up to and let them know where I am by paying them a compliment. I’ve also connected with some new people which I love so am delighted to have about.me for that.
Have you had the chance to use Intro yet?
I just discovered it last week and have been experimenting with it a little. I’m in the habit of using physical business cards and think this is a fantastic alternative. I believe once more people learn about it in Ireland, it can spread like wildfire.
Eliana Arredondo is the Community Manager for about.me. She is a graduate of Stanford University.