Week four has been one of the busier weeks I have had thus far at MedTech, but I love having a lot to do. Deadlines are something I like. For those of you that don’t know, my planner is my life. My favorite thing during the day is crossing off (highlighting) something that has been completed. I love the feeling of being productive. My biggest weakness with my planner and to do lists is always having way too much for each day. I try to start projects and papers multiple days before they are due, but usually won’t get to them until they become priority.
This week my most important project is working on a lead contact email. This email will be sent out to all the main contacts at member organizations to inform them of a new member resource, the MedTech Career Center. Though this resource has been available all along, MedTech has just recently made it prominent on the website and want more member organizations to post its most updated open positions, etc. I am excited to write this piece as it is the first of my own writing that will be going out for all the member organization contacts to read. I have read the style guide, but am interested to see how writing for this type of audience will be different than what I have written in the past. Along with this short letter I will also be creating a very basic implementation schedule. This includes what the task is, who will be completing the task and the date by which the task needs to be completed. Most of what is to be completed for this assignment I will be taking on myself. I find it interesting that I have been given the responsibility to decide the duration of this project. I decided that it would be able to be finished over a 2 week period and make it a priority over some of the everyday tasks required.
Every Wednesday/Friday, the events and news on the website needs to be updated. Jill sends me multiple emails a week with article links that she finds. I first have the skim over the articles so that I am familiar with the material. I then post a short summary of the article with the link to the MedTech “backend” and double check that it posted correctly by looking on the website. All of the articles and events posted are split into specialized groups based on how germane and relevant the information is to Upstate New York. I enjoy doing this weekly task as it is the only time I can really catch up on some type of news. It is all health related, but I believe that this will help me in any health PR related interviews that I may have coming up in the next few months.
This week I was given the opportunity to work from home since no one would be in the office on Wednesday. As I have mentioned before there are only three other people in the office and they usually attend the MedTech events all together or the president (Heather) and either Jill or Emily will attend. I am unable on Wednesdays to attend the MedTech events because I have my PR Campaigns class from 9:30 to 12:30. By the time I make it to the office they usually already have to be at the venue to set up. When all three attend I am able to work from home on my current assignments. This is different from any other internships I have had, because previous supervisors wanted to see me doing all my work. I am also surprised by this because I am being paid. It seems odd that I can be paid for something I am doing at home, but I know that some people do it all the time due to personal reasons. I stay honest about the hours I work and am interested if this can be an issue in larger offices? From the first day I walked into MedTech, I felt 100% trusted and respected that there would be no issues. I do have to admit I usually end up working about 45 minutes to an hour less than I would if I was in the office. This is due to taking a longer lunch for myself and laying out all the materials I need to do my assignments. But I usually either make it up the next week or on the weekends.
This week I also go a refresher of Constant Contact, which I first learned at the Forbes House Museum in Milton, MA. Constant Contact is a paid service that allows you to create professional and visually appealing emails to send out to customers, members (in MedTech’s case) and many other scenarios. I have noticed an increase in the number of organizations that use it for their email marketing. In the 6 months that I haven’t used the program (summer 2011), it seems a though some minor changes were made to the website making it MUCH more user friendly. This would be the platform that we would be creating the lead contact email on. A function was added to send test emails once the draft was completed. This has been a god send, since you can send it to colleagues in order to have a few sets of eyes on the work going out to your audience. Drafting a Constant Contact email is very easy. MedTech has a special template they use and then their images need to be uploaded and such. This is so the messages are recognizable to the lead contacts and have a better chance of being opened. MedTech has an above average industry standard rating for opens. The goal for associations is between 10-12%. MedTech has an open rate of 25-30% on every constant contact they send out. I hope to maintain this number with the messages that are my responsibility.
While writing drafts and sending them back and forth with Jill, I found that there were a lot of word changes and switches of sentences happening. I became a little nervous that my writing wasn’t strong enough for what Jill was looking for. I spoke with her on Friday about my concerns and she of course calmed them. My writing isn’t the issue, I’m just not used to writing for the particular audience that MedTech caters to. This will become a goal of mine while at MedTech. I hope to understand the types of words and tone to take with MedTech’s target audience. I know in the future I will have to relearn this wording and tone for whatever organization I am at. This is something that can change everywhere you go. I look forward to a new lesson every time I pursue new positions.
My next project will be to create a proposal for a third newsletter for MedTech currently titled Bio/Med Venture to run quarterly. MedTech currently has two newsletters that they send monthly called Bio/Med Research and Bio/Med Impact. These newsletters cover information on research projects, national news, companies and what is going on in Upstate New York. Bio/Med Venture will bring a career aspect to the information MedTech gives to its members and newsletter subscribers, giving an opportunity for new potential employees and partnering and collaboration of member organizations. I am excited to start this next project but really am not sure where to start. Guess I will find out.
Until next week.