Creative Career Level Up

Why I LOVED working for big global companies... the reasons might surprise you!

Apr 18, 2024
Photo by priscilladupreez on Unsplash

Today I'm going to be talking about big global companies… and why I loved working in them.

I have spoken to over 1200 people about their careers and I’m shocked by the very strong opinions that people have about global organisations - many of which are based on being outside looking in. 

So today, I want to dispel some of the myths surrounding what it’s like to work for a big global organisation. Just in case it’s something you are considering…. 

1. There’s room to make mistakes

I started working at Nike when I was 23 years old. Before Nike I worked only for very small companies. I couldn’t believe the difference when I went to Nike. 

Suddenly the weight of my decisions felt so much less. Nike was not going to collapse if I made a mistake - which in my 20’s I did A LOT! 

2. There’s big teams to learn from

In a big global org, you will be part of a big global team. You will have a boss, they will have lots of peers, there will be people at a local, regional and global level. There are just so many people!

And with this comes sooooo many people to learn from.  For me, it felt like there were learning opportunities at every turn and I loved it! Especially early on in my career.

3. They’ve got big budgets

When you work in Marketing, having a big marketing budget means you get to do lots of marketing work. You can experiment. You can execute massive campaigns. You can try things that no other brand is doing.

And you get the buzz of seeing your work all over the place! I loved nothing more than to come out of Oxford Circus in London and see my teams work plastered all over the station. 

4. You can hone your soft skills

Soft skills are highly valued in big global orgs - even at a junior level. With big teams, comes the need to flex your soft skills. Negotiating, influencing, building relationships, presenting, communicating - these skills are in high demand in big global companies.

I once came up with an idea for the iPhone launch while in the shower at Barrys Bootcamp on a Tuesday morning. By Friday, I'd convinced a Sales Director to give me £1M to execute it. Negotiating and influencing were two of my favourite soft skills! 

5. You’ll have loads of autonomy

It might surprise you but at both Nike and Apple, I had loads of autonomy.  At Apple, I was Partner Comms Manager for UK Retail. But I used to joke to my colleagues that I was actually the ‘CEO of UK Retail Comms’, because I had so much autonomy to drive my small part of the business in the direction I wanted it to go.

The same was true at Nike. Even when I was 23 years old, I was owning projects and had a lot of autonomy. So many people think you have to be in a small company to have autonomy - I found this to be the opposite. There is plenty of autonomy in big global companies - if you find the right one.

If you are on the fence about joining a big global company, I hope this has helped.

I found it to be a wonderful place to grow and develop my career. But of course, it isn’t for everyone. 

Next week, I will share with you some of the downsides of working for a big global company. Like the upsides, there are a few downsides to consider as well.

Until next time! 

If you are struggling to secure a role in a big global company and would like some help, the Creative Career Level Up programme might be the right solution for you.

I help people in the Marketing and Creative and Tech Industries to find their next perfect role. 

If you are looking to level-up your career, use the link below to schedule some time to chat about whether the programme might be right for you.