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Interviews / Marketing & Advertising

Balancing the Grind with Claudia Flannery, Social Media Content Strategist at oOh! Media

Claudia Flannery is the Social Media Content Strategist at oOh! Media, Australia and New Zealand’s leading out of home advertising company.

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1) To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your career background and current role?

I certainly can! I started out in a part-time gig at Start-Up Daily, and then dived straight into the PR world at Ogilvy in my first year of uni. From there I was hooked to working and progressing my career so kept it up full-time while also studying, which was definitely a unique experience.

I worked for a small company as a social media and content manager and then moved into media, working as a social producer for 9News and onto the Today Show which was a super challenging, but incredible experience.

I have since jumped into content strategy, working at oOh! Media on some clients I am extremely passionate about, like Netflix!

2) What does a day in your life look like for you? Can you take us through a recent workday?

I know everyone says things like this, but I can honestly say that no day is the same with my job. I start every day nice and early with a trip to Vive Active (a phenomenal reformer pilates studio), followed by a lot of coffee and a nice big brekky!

Then I dive into work, sometimes at a café or park, and other times at home from my very sad excuse for a WFH set-up. If I’m not in meetings with colleagues or clients, I’m then diving into data, research, reporting, keeping myself up-to-date on all the latest trends and changes to social media platforms, and now to broader topics such as outdoor advertising.

3) Does your current role allow for flexible or remote working? If so, how does that fit into your life and routine?

YES! I think yesterday was the first day I had been in the office since June actually. I ended up stuck over in Perth for 5 months during the most recent lockdown, and work was so incredibly accommodating in ensuring I could work to the best of my ability from over there.

I must admit, I love the flexibility of being able to work from home. It has taught me so much about myself and my work ethic. I know when I work best, and where I work best, and I am able to utilize that.

I think it really allows you to focus on your physical and mental wellbeing, and ensure that you don’t become consumed by your work.

4) What does work-life balance mean to you and how do you work to achieve that goal?

I’m still figuring this one out to be honest. I’m someone who is pretty ambitious, and wants to take on as much work as possible, and also upskill on the side so that I am always learning and improving.

It’s one thing the pandemic has really forced me to work on though. I make a real effort to start and finish my day with some form of movement, which acts as a good physical indicator of when I am online and offline.

I previously would be online and available 24/7 with past jobs I’ve been in, and I think people took advantage of that. Now I try to have boundaries to some degree, but am obviously available outside of work hours when it is needed.

I also try to separate work and life through ensuring I have activities and socialise during the week – I think that doing so just reminds you that there is more to life than your job, and that Monday to Friday don’t have to be work focused 100% of the time.

5) In the past 12 months, have you started or stopped any routines or habits to change your life?

I have made a real effort to be less attached to my phone and computer. In the evenings and on the weekends I try to turn it off, or leave it at home so that I can be present in whatever it is I’m doing. And my goodness it has been refreshing, and honestly so so good for my mental wellbeing! I highly recommend people try it.

I’ve also started spending the few minutes before I start my work day with a coffee in hand, up on the roof of my building just admiring the view of the harbour and enjoying a few moments to myself. It’s really helped me switch on when I get to my desk to smash out some work.

6) Do you have any favourite books, podcasts or newsletters that you’d like to recommend?

I have done A LOT of reading over the past few months. I could recommend SO many but I’m having a bit of a mental blank now.

Sarah J. Maas has some fantastic easy reads if you’re just wanting to zone out for a while. I also enjoyed Where the Crawdads Sing and was super inspired by More Than A Body.

Work related, Social Media Today’s newsletter is fantastic!

7) Are there any products, gadgets or apps that you can’t live without?

A little odd, but I am always fidgeting and need to be moving, so blue tack and this funny little fidgety toy thing sort of go with me everywhere! They actually keep me present and focused when I’m working. probably not the answer you were expecting.

8) If you could read an interview about work-life balance by anyone, who would that be?

Hmm good question, I’d say Ally Langdon actually! She is such a caring, talented, successful woman, who is so inspiring. I was always in awe of her when I worked with her at Today. She was balancing raising her beautiful children, an incredibly demanding job with some crazy hours, and all the while just being the most beautiful human. I think she has so much wisdom and experience to share!

9) Do you have any last thoughts on work, life or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?

I think just that if it’s something that concerns you, and that you might not quite have your head around yet, know that it is 100% something that you can achieve!

I look back to myself a few years ago, working crazy brekky TV hours, studying a Commerce degree full-time, and trying to manage my mental health which I think suffered a lot as a result of my inability to have that balance.

But here I am now in a position where I think I am really getting the hang of it, and getting my priorities sorted so that I can still succeed in my career, but also enjoy other aspects of my life!

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About Author

Balance the Grind is a work-life balance publication on a mission to showcase healthy work-life balance through interesting stories from people all over the world, in different careers and lifestyles.