How long have you been working at iFocus? Since we started (one year and eight months-ish)
Describe what you do. Much of what I do involves managing our programmatic display campaigns, which includes anything from submitting new campaigns, updating campaigns, making optimizations, making small campaign edits, etc.
I also manage our internal team, so I do a lot with processes and making sure everything internally runs smoothly. I try to make sure my team is always well equipped and in a positive, motivated headspace.
What does a typical workday look like for you? Boy – that can really vary! Usually I start my day off by checking emails and following up with unfinished tasks or questions from the previous day. Then I jump into my daily to-do list, which can include anything from updating and submitting 15 display campaigns, writing case studies, having one on one conversations with my team, jumping on a call with a client to help them set up metrics tracking on the backend of their website, collaborating with other team members to come up with an effective marketing strategy for a new client – anything. My day-to-day tasks are always a bit different, but it keeps me on my toes!
Do you have any nicknames in the office? I don’t really have any office-specific nicknames. Everyone just calls me Syd, which is what I’ve been called by most people my whole life.
What would your co-workers say is your most distinguishing feature at work? I’m pretty quiet and patient. I hardly ever get really worked up about things (at least not outwardly), and you won’t see me getting really emotional at work. I try to maintain a pretty levelheaded, calm demeanor.
Briefly talk about one of your all-time favorite iFocus projects you’ve worked on. It sounds super nerdy, but I loved when we switched over to a new internal project management system. It really allowed me to evaluate our processes from all angles and make things much more efficient for everyone. I actually love coming up with processes, so it was great for me, and it was a fun way to revamp something that affected everyone in the company (and ultimately our clients). Efficient processes are what keep things on the backend seamless so that the team can effectively fulfill requests for our clients.
Besides your own work, what iFocus product/service is your favorite? Why? I love all of our services and I think they work together so well, but I’m a pretty big believer in SEO. You can do all the paid marketing in the world, but if you’re sending potential customers to a site that’s hard to navigate or lacking in helpful content, then a lot of that is a waste in my opinion. I think the importance of good SEO is often underrated.
What do you like to do in your free time? It sounds kind of lame, but I’m really a homebody for the most part. I’m a crazy dog lady, so I love spending time with my two dogs (and my husband, of course). I’m also pretty crafty, so you can usually find me working on some sort of project, from knitting a blanket to hand-lettering a wood or canvas sign.
Oh, and my husband and I like to think we’re the amateur version of Chip and Joanna Gaines, so you can usually find us working on some DIY house project every weekend.
What’s your favorite local KC food joint? That’s so hard – I love tons of local KC restaurants. I love Mexican food though, so I’m going to have to go with Rudy’s Tenampa Taqueria in Westport. I’m obsessed with their tacos, and they have pretty fabulous margaritas.
What movie or TV show character do you most identify with? I feel like I relate pretty well to Willow from Buffy the Vampire Slayer (aka my favorite show ever). She’s the introverted, kind of nerdy type who isn’t the most obviously heroic one of the bunch, but still plays a really vital part in her group of friends and their success.
What’s one cool thing that has happened to you recently? Well, I’m not sure what we’re considering as recent, but I’m eight months pregnant with my first child – I’d say that’s probably the coolest thing that’s happened to me in a long time!
Describe your ideal weekend getaway. I’d love to go somewhere that has a lot of outdoorsy things to do, like hiking or kayaking, as well as some cute antique shopping and good local restaurants. I love quaint, smaller towns – life just seems slower and more relaxed. Ideally I’d be staying at a bed and breakfast, or at an Airbnb property. I really like to immerse myself in the local vibe anywhere I go.
Are you a cat person or a dog person? Like I said before – crazy dog lady through and through. I grew up with lots of dogs and have yet to meet a dog I don’t like.
What celebrity would you most like to have drinks and a conversation with? Why? If we’re talking modern celebrities, I’d love to meet Anne Hathaway. She’s played so many diverse roles, and when she’s away from the movie cameras, she seems really intelligent and down to earth. I’d love to pick her brain on a few things she’s openly advocated for in the past.
What’s one weird quirk that you have? I feel like I have a lot of weird quirks, but one that’s work-related is time left over on the microwave (like if you take your food out early, and there’s still some time left on the microwave timer). It literally drives me nuts. Every time I walk past the kitchen, even if I don’t actually need anything from the kitchen, I go in and clear the time if I notice there’s time left.
What social network consumes the greatest amount of your free time? Facebook, for sure. I’m too long-winded for Twitter! I love Instagram too, but I’m definitely not on it as much as Facebook.
What’s one of your favorite quotes? “Better is a poor man who walks in his integrity than a rich man who is crooked in his ways.”
Describe one thing that’s a source of inspiration for you. It sounds kind of strange, but the future. It’s scary and unknown, but there are so many possibilities at your fingertips, and often you can make it what you want it to be – what better source of inspiration than all of that possibility to make life something incredible?
What’s your favorite part about working at iFocus? I love coming to work for many reasons, but I always tell people I love our culture. I love the team I work with day in and day out, and I love how collaborative everything is. For the most part, everyone truly does get along, and the whole team is always open to questions and brainstorming sessions – I think it’s really important not to get too proprietary about your thoughts and ideas, and everyone here is very open about sharing things that have or haven’t worked for them. It all turns out to be a win win scenario for everyone in the long run.
What’s the most important thing you’ve learned from working at iFocus thus far? Flexibility and the ability to roll with the punches. Starting a company from the ground up is no joke, and things often don’t go according to plan. iFocus now is already so different from iFocus a year and a half ago, and I think embracing change and recognizing it as a positive catalyst for growth is critical.