Lauren Shirreffs has always been an entrepreneur and self-employed, currently creating social media strategies for brands, running a t-shirt company, and writing for a few publications. What's her advice for other young professionals? "Work now, sleep later. Don’t give up. Try everything. Don’t fear failure. Believe in yourself, or no one else will."
Elevator Pitch: Describe your job in a nutshell.
I create the online social media strategies for a variety of local establishments and national brands, acting as the voice of each brand online. I also co-founded Global Warming Tees, t-shirts with a voice, all embracing positive messaging. And…I freelance write for a few publications.
Why did you start working at your company? What was the inspiration for this career route?
I have always been an entrepreneur and self-employed. I live for the ups and downs, they remind me I am alive. I am motivated by the drive of making something work and the satisfaction of knowing I did it myself. I am fascinated by marketing, it is as creative as fashion and really gives you insight into the way people think. Our passion for Global Warming Tees sprouted from our desire to make a difference, somehow, in the world around us. It is our way to share the importance of being positive, peaceful and respectful.
What is the best part of what you do on a day-to-day basis? The most challenging part?
The best part (in both marketing and t-shirts) is creating something effective that people can appreciate and get behind. Also, it is so incredibly rewarding to make t-shirts on themes such as bullying, and seeing how positive the response and support is. When a teenager girl, who has been teased to the point where she has to move schools, proudly wears your t-shirt on campus, if this doesn’t make you tear up, check yourself.
The most challenging part is in social, trying to explain that numbers and increases in likes on FB don’t dictate how successful your business is. Social media doesn’t have to be a popularity contest. If you wanted likes, you could just buy them. Instead, I try to shift their thinking to understand how important it is to create interesting, engaging and different content that their particular audience can identify with and enjoy.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Continuing my efforts in expanding my company, dabbling in new endeavours, constantly learning… and who knows, maybe with another cat.
What does success look like to you?
Finding something you are excited to wake up to, being passionate about everything you put your energy into, constant learning, and still enough time for Sunday dinner with family.
What is the most memorable milestone in your career?
There are many. I am so blessed with such amazing personalities and inspiring people around me, that every day is memorable.
Do you have any advice for other young professionals?
Work now, sleep later. Don’t give up. Try everything. Don’t fear failure. Believe in yourself, or no one else will.
Do you support any charities? If so, which one(s) and why is that important to you?
Personally, every year I support and organize a fundraiser called WORDS for the charity Literature for Life. They form reading circles in marginalized communities for young (often times youth) mothers. These women go on to do amazing things, while writing/expressing/ and performing poetry and spoken words. It is beyond inspiring.
What to you is notable?
Notable: Simple people, who work hard to achieve their dreams, while remembering what is important in life and appreciating everything around them.
Blackberry, iPhone, Android, or Other?
Blackberry when I travel, iPhone for life.