I received an email from an aspiring planner in Brazil and I’m not sure what to tell her. I went to Sao Paulo for the first time this past November and have met many lovely planejadores in person or on skype, but generally in the context of their desire to move to the US or Europe. Here’s her question:
I live in Sao Paulo and I have recently completed my undergraduate degree in Social Communication and Advertisement.
I’m writing you because I have recently decided to shift my work area. Although I’ve always wanted to work in Account Planning, I worked as an intern in the branding area of a large company in the food industry, and in the last two years I’ve been working with marketing for advertisers, in a editorial company.
I’ve been having a lot of difficulty to make this shift, and I think it is because the brazillian Account planning market is too closed. Everybody knows each other, and it becomes hard for newcomers to be introduced to this market. Also, agencies ask for a lot of background, even for junior positions. I would like to ask you how do you think I can get some space in this market. I considered applying for a program in Miami Ad School here in Brazil, or even searching for a planning program in the U.S. I’m afraid of being unemployed or out of the market, even if I take one of these programs. What would you advise me to do?
Personally, I think it’s difficult to get that first planning position anywhere in the world. You have to make it happen. Without being pushy, you can ask for informal chats with planners to learn how they got their jobs. And I think schools are a good opportunity to meet other planners. Planning isn’t a profession you learn from memorizing jargon and case studies. You have to learn by doing. So internships really help. But in my opinion, there is something innate that makes a good planner. If you’ve got it, you’ll find a way to get a job.
What do you think, planejadores?