Spotlight on Stephanie Melodia
At Spotlight, we had the opportunity to speak to Stephanie Melodia, Director of Bloom, who inspired us with her love for working and her career journey.
I’ve been creative for as long as I can remember. I learnt to draw before anything else and was always known as “the arty one” at school. I was completely lost in terms of career direction in my teenage years, so I decided to continue down the path of creativity and went to art school, where I eventually specialised in fashion illustration.
It wasn’t until the age of 22 when I got my first “proper job” at a gorgeous boutique creative agency in Clerkenwell, London, that my eyes were opened up to the whole world of business. There were so many things I was previously naive to; I perfectly remember visiting Coca-Cola’s head offices during my first week and that just blew my mind. Who knew that coke has offices?!
It was this discovery that awakened my hunger to learn, to work, to take in as much as I could - and more. Within 3 months, I was promoted to Account Manager and, a year or so later, my role evolved again to have more of a sales and marketing function.
From there, I moved into advertising and then transitioned in-house for a big tech firm, before setting up my own company, Bloom. Whilst I’ve always been creative and loved art, I knew I needed something more stimulating and that matched my energy - marketing was the answer. I never knew what marketing was or how it worked until my early 20s, now I run a marketing agency.
I set up Bloom, a marketing agency for startups, in 2017, after leading the UK marketing for a Top 10 Global App Developer, Meitu. Prior to this, I spent the best part of a decade working agency side, across a multitude of accounts. Having marketing experience from both sides of the fence has enriched my career as a marketer, and was something I wanted to achieve before finally setting up my own company.
Whilst I've experienced a ton of ups and downs, financial and otherwise, I feel like it's people-related that hits me the most. For example, when things don't work out with a client or a member of the team, that saddens me the most as I am such a "people person."
I’m very fortunate in that I have the most incredible support network, for which I'm so grateful. Outside of having a shoulder to lean on, there are some great motivational podcasts and speakers I listen to when I'm in the mood.
Drive and determination
I love working. You've gotta love the process. Whether it's down to being a Capricorn for astrology-believers, my Clifton Strengths (Achiever) or my natural work ethic, I just do what I do! When starting your career you have to work hard, ask lots of questions and use your initiative.
My advice would be to think about what you really want, then go for it. I recommend getting a good executive coach, too. I have some incredible people in the team who support me in the best possible way. Make sure that you're there for them, not the other way round.
There is no one size fits all. Some people need to be left alone, some people need spoon-feeding. And there is no better or worse here; it's how you have to adapt to them as their manager.
The culture fit is everything. Basic traits such as passion, a good work ethic, and a willingness to learn, are the only ingredients you need. The rest you can teach.
What does the future look like?
We are working with such great clients and pitching for some really interesting new work, too. We are continuing to scale which means more clients and more team members. We've also started seeing some traction in the US so hopefully, Bloom will go transatlantic soon. We're also likely to continue to work remotely post-Covid but meet IRL for team bonding.
Advice for businesses struggling with remote working
Proactively create moments of bonding and relationship-building, like a Zoom party or online pub quiz. Remember to actually pick up the phone and have a good chat without looking at a screen, that's nice!
On a more practical level, there are so many tools now to help us stay connected, just make sure you're using the one/s everyone is happy with.
If you enjoyed this blog and want to learn more about Bloom, visit their website here. Or if you would like to learn more about Stephanie Melodia, check out her LinkedIn, Instagram or Twitter. Want to read more inspiring stories? Check out our other blogs here.