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Sunday Success Story - Teion Sealey

Sales and Marketing Coordinator, Atlantis Sea Food Inc.

Who is Teion Sealey? I am a confident and ambitious twenty-one year old, currently pursuing a Bachelor's degree in Sociology and Law at the University of the West Indies Cave Hill Campus. I am also a photographer, graphic designer and student leader on both The Faculty of Social Sciences Committee and The Photography Association of Cave Hill as Public Relations Officer. I would describe myself as an omnivert, most of the time I enjoy my own company. Watching Netflix, studying/reading or listening to music. But I also try to be sociable, emphasis on "try". I love debating, public speaking, hiking, partying (especially), playing lawn tennis, going to the beach and hanging out with friends generally. With my sense of humour, sarcasm and famous facial expressions, there's never a dull moment LOL! What does your day to day entail? I immediately review every task needed to be done throughout the day and possibly set time frames for each task to be completed, while getting ready. Usually, I attend my morning classes from as early as 8:00 a.m. When I'm finished with classes at 9:00 a.m. Sometimes 10:00 a.m, I make my way to work. As I reach the office, I start checking each Social media platform I.e. Facebook and Instagram, which involves engaging with our audience (replying to messages or comments), keeping track of campaign performance, updating my content calendar, working on social media post and designing content for our pages.

I also check my emails, research and read blogs as it relates to trends, nutrition facts and just about anything in the fishing industry. Some days, I leave work in the afternoon to attend classes again which could last until 7:00 p.m. During my time on or off campus, I also assume my student leader duties, where I attend meetings, participate where necessary and again create content for the pages I manage. When I have the time throughout my busy schedule, I hit the gym about 2-3 times a week for about an hour to an hour and a half and play lawn tennis every Monday and Wednesday evening (my body will be fine lol). And lastly, I spend the rest of the night on campus studying in the library until 10:00 pm, sometimes 11:00!

As a Sales and Marketing Coordinator, my main responsibility involves planning, implementing and managing my company's social media strategy and campaigns. I work closely with both the sales and production team to ensure transparency of promotional and informative content. I also measure and produce reports on every social media campaign and provide constructive feedback based on performance. My aim is to always keep our target audience engaged, increase our brand awareness and establish a social media base for sales and leads. How did your interest in Marketing develop? My interest in social media marketing sparked when I was a part of a previous hiking group. Without any experience in graphic design, I was asked if I could create a new logo for rebranding purposes. From there, I became the Vice-Creative Director, where I managed the Social media platforms, created content and also the main photographer. And just like that, I got into it! I loved engaging with our online audience and creating content. It was as though I discovered a skill and creativity I thought I never had or would ever be interested in. In 2019, I got a job opportunity in the role of Marketing Coordinator/graphic designer and also an executive position of Public Relations Officer on the UWI Debate Society to get more experience managing social media platforms. At that point, I knew this was possibly another career option I could definitely push. I eventually got better at graphic design and content creation with the help of YouTube and other research. But I just knew there was more to it than just creating and posting content, there had to be more. So, with the somewhat free time I had during the lockdown earlier this year. I decided to take a course on social media marketing. After looking for some free courses I stumbled upon, and found a Diploma course on Social Media Strategy. I completed and absolutely enjoyed the course, every module was informative, detailed and taught me WAY more than I thought. However, I will admit that I never had an interest in Marketing. I had an interest in the field of accounting, and while studying accounting and economics at the Barbados Community College, I had hopes of pursuing further studies in that field and becoming a financial advisor. But I easily lost interest in economics and changed it to law. After that, I realized I was more passionate about the legal field rather than finance. My main career goal now is to become an attorney at law, practising the areas of criminal, human rights, corporate and family law. Or just as a legal officer in a company. This led to me currently pursuing a Bachelor's in Sociology and Law and immediately afterwards, a Bachelor's of law (LLB). What do you love most about the industry? I love when it comes to content creation. There is always something new to design and ideas to come up with. It gives me a chance to discover my creative side. I also love working with the sales and production team to come up with strategic campaigns and promotions.

Tell us about your journey to finding employment.

Ever since the lockdown in March, I decided to leave my then marketing role in hopes of a better opportunity with the ideal company culture I had in mind. You're probably thinking, “Who would leave their job during a pandemic?” But I refused to believe that no companies were hiring due to that point in time. I settled down and applied for different jobs in my fields of interest, whether there were vacancies or not. I also decided that it was the time to build a professional network, and that's when I joined LinkedIn. I figured that if I was going to land my next opportunity, then I needed to network with business professionals and make a good impression. I spent almost every day building my LinkedIn profile and engaging as much as possible. At some points, I felt like I had no idea what I was doing on LinkedIn, I knew nobody and I thought I wasn't ready or experienced enough. After sending several emails/applications with no feedback, I spent more time reviewing and rebuilding my resume to figure out where I went wrong, with the help of a passionate HR professional after I reached out for some pointers. She even gave me tips for my profile!

After one week of being on LinkedIn, I was contacted at the end of March for an opening in Telesales. Unfortunately, after having that interview in May and another in July for a sales/technician role, I had no luck. I completely lost hope, where I took rejection personally; I got tired of pointlessly applying and just forgot about job hunting for a while. I was especially worried if I would be flexible enough for studying and work. However, I started applying again, and that's when I was contacted for another interview at the end of July for another sales role for sales associate. To be honest, I wasn't expecting much from this interview after what I've been through. And maybe I was right (at least what I first thought). I did not get the sales associate role but instead, I was offered the role of Sales and Marketing Coordinator; where I was given the tasks of mainly running the Social platforms and website. I could not believe that the right opportunity was just waiting for me. It was also perfect to implement everything I learned from my course. Tell us your most memorable achievement to date. I wouldn't say that I have a "most memorable achievement". Knowing that my hard work and perseverance pays off and seeing my creativity flourish is most memorable for me.

Is there anything else you'd like to share with us? In addition to marketing and graphic design, I would also like to expand on the fact that I also own my own photography brand called "Lensking Photography" focused on landscape, event and portrait photography. Just like graphic design, I never thought I would be into photography. But there came a point where I decided I needed to finally try new things. My advice to anyone job hunting, it could be a draining process, but keep at it, trust the process and your opportunity will come. Take advantage of free online courses. Create a LinkedIn profile and build a professional network. Volunteer or freelance to gain more experience. And most importantly never forget that Rejection only means you're being redirected to that right opportunity.


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