by Christine Melvin
We spoke with Elicia Davis of Freshwater Digital to learn more about what it means to be a Project Manager. Elicia used to work in the sales department of Freshwater, but saw the need for a Project Manager at the agency. She is currently the only project manager at Freshwater.
In this position, Elicia is able to split her time between working with clients, and doing behind the scenes organizational and strategic work. For her, this is a perfect fit. It allows her to use the creative side of her brain without having the work of a creative.
How did she get here?
Elicia majored in marketing and management at GV. Right out of college she interned at an advertising agency, in a coordinator position, she then moved into a project management role at that same agency. She also did work in event management and planning. Some of her projects included creating marketing plans and advertising budgets. Elicia then left the advertising and marketing world to go into sales for a few years. She then came back into the industry through project coordination which she has been doing for around four years, the last of which was at Freshwater Digital.
What made Elicia want to go into the job that she has now?
Project Management has a nice combination of client work, creative work and communication. She appreciates figuring out how she can expand on what they want to do. This role allows Elicia to be creative without being in a traditionally considered creative position.
What are the skills needed for Project Management?
Time management, budgeting, being able to hold people accountable, clear/effective communication (with her team and the client), not being afraid of going to a client with bad news. (It’s better to have bad news than to have no news or late news!)
From coming into the office to eating lunch to leaving, what does a typical day for a Project Manager look like?
For Elicia, it starts with going through projects, planning out her day, and setting priorities. No day is ever the same, some other morning activities could be knocking out emails, meeting with the creative team, meeting with clients, etc. Her afternoon is usually for checking the status of her projects to make sure everything is on time and on budget. She also uses the time in the afternoon to send out purchase orders.
What is the best thing about Freshwater?
The way that the team works together and seeing everything come together at the end of a project.
What is one thing Elicia loves about being in advertising?
The opportunity to help people get excited about a good product. She loves being able to see the product go through the processes and see people being receptive to the work she has done.
What is something Elicia doesn’t necessarily enjoy about being in advertising?
Advertising has a bad reputation. She wants to be able to promote and get excited about something, but it’s hard because she doesn’t want people to feel like she’s shoving ads down people’s throats.
How and where does Elicia find inspiration?
Blogs, different websites, etc.
What is one piece of advice Elicia would give to an advertising student?
“Go with your gut, you know your product/your TA, YOU (the advertiser) know the best way to reach these people. Go with what you feel is right opposed to trying to follow the status quo. You could be on the brink of something new.”
Keep tuned in for future interviews by following us on our twitter @gvadclub, Facebook, and Instagram just by clicking on the links!