What I Learned My First Week as an Apprentice at The Key
Hannah Payne here, a rising senior at UCLA, a NorCal native, and The Key’s newest Apprentice. I recently joined the team and so far have been blown away by the PR field, working in San Francisco, and most of all, the incredible team at The Key.
In my first week at The Key, I learned valuable lessons: some fun, some downright funny, some revealing the misadventures of a new SF commuter, and all allowing me to grow and learn in an incredibly energetic, fast-paced, and challenging space. Keep scrolling to read five of the things I learned during my first week with The Key.
It’s Important to Hit the “STOP” Button Before You Arrive at Your Designated Bus Stop
It seems like a no brainer, but as a first-time bus commuter I learned this important lesson when I intended to get off the bus and it rolled right past Battery & Sacramento. (Insert upside down face emoji here). As it turns out, bus drivers do not, in fact, have magical mind reading powers and one must properly notify them with enough time to change lanes, make the stop, ect. in order to avoid an unnecessary trek through the frigid climate of a San Francisco summer. Other #CommuterStruggles included learning what a Clipper Card was, obtaining said Clipper Card, and falling asleep on my ride home which then caused me to accidentally take the bus to the end of the line. In spite of these #CommuterStruggles, crossing the San Francisco Bay each morning by bus (or even the occasional ferry ride if I’m feeling spendy) offers quite the magical view and a beautiful start to my work day.
Taking Advantage of the Espresso Machine at Our Office is (No Pun Intended) KEY.
My first few days on the job I still (clearly) had a lot to learn. Among these important work-life lessons was the discovery of the (now) sacred espresso machine. My first few work mornings were full of quality, yet standard brewed coffee. I leveled up when I accidentally stumbled upon the holy grail of work perks: the espresso machine. Equipped for lattes, cappuccinos, americanos, espresso shots, and essentially whatever the caffeine enthusiast's heart desires, this little machine made a big impact on my work day and overall quality of life.
Building Media Lists Means That You Are Constantly Updated on the News
I no longer have to designate time to make sure I’m up to date on current events; now it’s part of my job! Whether I’m researching a specific reporter, beat, or publication, I can’t get through a day (or an hour for that matter) without needing to open The New York Times, CNN, or FOX. The simple task of building a media list and scanning through virtually every major media outlet as part of my daily routine makes me more aware and more competent in the PR field and in life. For example, today I learned all about electric scooter culture in SF as part of my research through articles in the Washington Post, Business Insider, and TechCrunch.
Working in the Financial District Means You Can Grab Lunch with Fellow Apprentice Friends
If know and love San Francisco, then the charms and cultures of each unique neighborhood crammed into this 7 X 7 mile peninsula will quickly become evident. Up to now, I’d never taken the time to explore and get to know the Financial District. Until you’ve joined the workforce, there isn't much of a need to wander down the Battery. The Financial District has a personality of it’s own, combining SF’s hippie attitude with fast pace of the tech industry. Once you’ve arrived, you quickly realize that this is where all the action happens and, consequently, where masses of interns migrate every summer. The hustle and bustle, high volume of interns, and exorbitant amount of food options are major perks of the culture in this part of the city and lend to very happy lunch hours.
The Key is Comprised of Super Cool, Bad Ass, Smart, and Welcoming Women
As with every new job, there is an adjustment period. I fully expected to feel like an outsider during my first days at The Key, but instead experienced an instant embrace by every single member of the team. I was immediately immersed in projects, felt no less valued just because I was new, and was offered help whenever I had questions or didn’t know how to complete a task. The women at The Key are energetic, focused, and driven, yet genuine and lighthearted. A work environment that cultivates, uplifts, and embraces collaboration instead of cut-throat competition is a rare and beautiful find, and I am so thankful to join this team.