One Year At Carrotby Daniela
Daniela celebrates her first Carrotversary.
As a Producer, I have this thing where I'm really focused on deadlines and what everyone needs to contribute by a certain time in order to get things done and, oops, it's a year later and I still haven't written my Welcome post! Luckily, I've been given the opportunity to talk about how excited I am to join a company a year after I've already become deeply rooted within my second family.
In all honesty, I did write my welcome post (come on, I'm no slacker), but for some top secret reason (read: old fashioned client) we didn't publish it at the time. I'm staring down at the words I had written down, and I feel lucky that a) it all still holds true today and b) I'm even more in love with my job and colleagues (not like that - take it easy) than I ever thought possible.
Anyone who knows me on a personal level, knows that I am not the most outwardly sappy, emotional person. I keep that hidden away, reserved for my 1am Youtube wormhole sessions. I mean have you seen this Beyonce video?! I still cry even though I've watched a handful of times. Yet, despite the fact that I keep my emotions private, there have been a number of times that I've teared up when hearing other Carrots (especially Mike Germano) speak about the company and us. I even got choked up as I spoke about my own gratitude towards my Carrot fam (it may or may not have been after several glasses of wine). I've never experienced anything like that before, especially not in a professional setting.
If you quickly glance at past welcome posts - you'll notice a really common thread: Almost all of us talk about how excited we are to gain a new family. To an outsider, it probably sounds really cliche, and I could see how some people may think we are all a bunch of corny saps. They might even think that after a while, and after the excitement wears off, we probably won't feel that way anymore. Well, those terrible, cynical people are wrong. We truly and honestly are obsessed with one another. It isn't only because quite a number of us are new to the city, or because this is our first job after college either. I've lived in NYC my whole life, and have worked at a number of web agencies since 2005. My blood family lives 20 minutes away from my apartment, yet I still feel an extremely close bond to my Carrot family. There are relationships I have built here, that I can see staying with me for the duration of my life (I'm kind of old, so might not be that long).
I don't play favorites, but I have favorites. They change hourly because any time I get to work with someone, and see how incredibly talented, smart, and funny they are -- they become my favorite of that moment. Everyone brings with them a unique strength and approach to whatever position they hold and since day one I have always said how refreshing it all is. I have learned more here during my first few months, than I have in the several years I've spent in the industry. Not only has Carrot helped me grow professionally, but it has contributed to my emotional happiness in general. I welcome random hugs now - something I used to always be extremely awkward and weird about. I work with a truly dedicated team, whereas previously I had the weight of 65 projects all on my shoulders (while being owed 10 grand mind you). We may work hard, spending some late nights in the office, but we manage to have fun, and we'll never feel like we're in this alone.
Since I started a year ago today, I've probably made close to 17 bike trips (happily) to Chipotle to get us lunch, bartended a handful of Digital DUMBOs, moved offices, hired 15 more people, gained a batchload of new clients, started our official committees, held an awesome birthday party, been featured in a music video, traveled to the other side of the world, etc. I've been to Omaha, and the slightly more exciting city of Los Angeles where I was a mere 10 feet away from Lance Bass, and the slightly more beautiful Mila Kunis. Not only has it been exciting to see first-hand how much Carrot has grown, but I feel fortunate that none of this has ever felt overwhelming or rushed. We continue to put out work we are proud of, and expand without the sacrifice of our culture or the beliefs Carrot was founded on. I feel as honored today, as I did on day one to be a part of this exceptional place. Now excuse me as I pour myself a celebratory drink from our keg.