From the workstation of a post-grad intern

Today: I’m sitting at my workstation at redpepper where I’m the video intern and work alongside some super impassioned, fun, and hardworking people. The road I took to get here was a little (a lot) less glamorous.

May 2016: Graduated from university

^me metaphorically (but it’s funny because those are actually columns at my school)

^me metaphorically (but it’s funny because those are actually columns at my school)

June-most of July 2016: Tried to answer one of life’s biggest questions: “what do I do now?” while lying on a couch-- watching old movies (TY monty python’s holy grail)

*  my parents’ version  * June-most of July 2016: Responsibly waking up early, applying for internships, jobs, and the like.

*my parents’ version* June-most of July 2016: Responsibly waking up early, applying for internships, jobs, and the like.

Both are true.

July 29, 2016: Moved to Nashville after talking with a creative agency located in Germantown.

August 1, 2016: First day at redpepper as the video intern.

5 v important things that shows why redpepper will be one of the best decisions for your career.

1. Peppers & Interns = friends

I moved to a new city with only knowing my aunt, uncle, and three little cousins. And I started a month earlier than the other interns. But, it was a really cool opportunity because I got to know just the peppers really well. I introduced myself to everyone whenever I walked past someone new. There were a few times I walked past a person because I got nervous, only to psych myself up and make them stop to turn around so I could say hi (sorry—¯\_(ツ)_/¯)  But, now, I chat about 90s hip hop, giant boomboxes, Cubs vs. Cards, and shoes.

Then, the interns came and I met 12 more wonderful people. We’re a loud, quirky, creative group that eats lunch all together on Wednesdays (we don’t wear pink), migrates from area to area at the same time, and waits for free food for so long that we form lines. Besides that, it’s our responsibility to work as a group for several projects like the intern blog cover photos. It’s a fine line to manage our personal responsibilities with our group tasks, but that has pushed us to gel and find our strengths to get it done.

^Proof we take food seriously.

^Proof we take food seriously.

Intern Class of Fall 2016

2. You will learn so much your head might just explode from all the knowledge and growth.

I came into this video internship with, what I thought, was a pretty good base of knowledge--I knew how to work a camera well, set up shots, hit the record button etc., and I was excited to learn more about videography. I can’t believe how much I’ve progressed in just two months.

How is it possible to learn so much, just halfway through an internship? Honestly, my brain can’t comprehend it. I’ll tell you it’s because of my mentors--shoutout 2 Carl & James. I consider myself lucky that I still have a few more months to learn from them. Don’t worry, you’ll have a version of them too. Seriously, the people here know what they’re doing.

Don’t be afraid to ask questions, for feedback on projects, or to bounce new ideas off whomever. Bottom line: you will learn a little bit from everyone at redpepper, and your career will thank you.

^ this COULD be you. You WANT this to be you.

^ this COULD be you. You WANT this to be you.

3. The people (peppers) are invested in your growth. Cool, right?

I mean it. One of redpepper’s core values is “We actively support personal growth.” In the first couple of weeks, you create a growth plan with your mentor. A GROWTH PLAN!! It can be absolutely anything you dream of, and the people at redpepper will 100% support you in any way they can. It rocks.

Part of my growth plan is to understand what it takes to create a video from start to finish. In order to do so, I pitch and execute new content ideas on a regular basis. (this comes back later in reason #5.) From there, I bounce the ideas with more peppers to round out the piece. And voila, a new piece from start to finish with a pepper flavor!

Here’s a lil’ video I made:

4. The culture is centered on change, strengthening passions, and don’t forget a putt-putt green, ping pong table, beer on tap, dogs, and free coffee (all things that may make it impossible for you to want to work anywhere else.)

The space is amazing. They bring dogs to work (ICYMI there’s a golden retriever, Stella; a greyhound, Beans; a lab, Emma; and a puppy named Sawyer). There are “zone rooms” for when you need to put your nose to the grindstone and get it done, and then there’s spaces to help you unwind afterwards (maybe with a beer). It’s a great mix of work hard, play hard. I’m so productive!!!

But, culture just isn’t about space. It’s the brand motto, the core values, the extra pepper-ness,  and the drive to go the extra mile. It’s the people that push you to do better each day. It’s the people that trust you to do your job (which is wayyyy more than going on a coffee run). It’s the people who treat you like a friend, not just an intern.

5. You got to put in some hard work, take the initiative, and it’ll pay off.

You’ve come to learn and grow and what better way to do so than by doing!



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Because it’s so dang true. If you work hard and show that initiative, you’ll be asked to help out on different projects. And on different projects, you’ll get more experience. It’s exciting to be a part of new things, so get a hold of the reins, take charge, grab the horns, break some eggs, and so on and so forth.

October 2016:  I’m halfway through this internship and I can tell you redpepper will be one of the best decisions for your career (and you).


Katie Straughn, St. Louis, MO, Video Intern