It’s been almost two months that we’ve been working on campus engagement initiatives with Groupon Student Brand Ambassadors in Katowice to leverage employer branding and talent acquisition efforts for our new office there. As they say, „the shoemaker’s children go barefoot”, we’ve been busy enough over the past weeks working on career fairs and campus relations that it’s only today that we’d love to proudly introduce the creative bunch! Better late than ever ✌️
Tell us about yourself! What do you study, what organisations are you part of and what languages do you speak?
Jacek: Well, thanks for asking! 😉 My name’s Jacek and I’ve just started my Master’s degree studies in order to learn more about Journalism and Creative Writing. It’s a huge change for me, as I got my first degree in Finance and Accounting. I’m actively engaging in projects created by Students’ Organization PANEUROPA at the University of Economics in Katowice, which I am a student of. It might happen that if I go out with a couple of friends after the classes, I may sometimes start speaking some basic Spanish, German or even French, all of which I used to study at some point in my life. Besides those, English is my foreign language of choice and I probably read more English words a day than in the beautiful dialect of my forefathers!
Ola: I study Business English at the University of Silesia – my field of study links the regular philological stuff such as Linguistics, Phonetics or Literature with some British and American law issues, international banking and marketing. Last year I founded an academic research circle Students’ Business Centre and since then I’m a proud president of this organisation. We help students and young graduates in developing their practical skills and also, by organising workshops with many companies (including Groupon, of course!) we link job seekers with employers. Because of my field of study I obviously speak English and a little German (since this is my second language at the university).
Jakub: My name is Jacob. I’m a student of Economics at Wyższa Szkoła Bankowa in Dabrowa Gornicza and simultaneously I’m studying Law at Silesian University. I’m a member of Social Communication students’ organisation and also looking forward to joining Erasmus Student Network organisation in WSB.
When did you start building your professional experience? What skills have you developed since?
Jacek: It all started after I joined PANEUROPA, my student’s organization during my freshman year in 2014/2015. Since then I’ve taken part in many courses, workshops and lessons that allowed me to become much more focused, collaborative and overall effective with any project I decide to work on. I’ve managed to be more positive and accepting, which led me to finding many new friends that are interested in the same stuff as I am.
Jakub: I believe I was about 16 when I started building my professional experience. I’d started with customer service: I used to work as a bartender and waiter. That was a really great experience, which showed me how to take care of excellent customer experience. After couple of years working as described below I knew that I liked it! Also my participation in the student club brought interesting perspectives.Why did you decide to join Groupon? It did look like a good idea that you would check out what it’s like to work as a Customer Service Agent even though your efforts are mainly focused on employer branding!
Jacek: It must have been for all the green, if I recall correctly. Don’t they say it’s the colour of hope and fun, after all…? To be perfectly honest, though, I really was excited about working in a fresh environment, which at the time was not yet open for business. Being able to be a part of the original and diverse team, building the workplace environment from the ground up and seeing the possibility of being promoted pretty soon made me want to join. Add in Groupon’s coolness factor, which contrasted with my last employer’s strict corporate culture and it’s no wonder why I enlisted right away!
Jakub: I needed a change, so I decided that all I need is to meet some new people and get back to working with customers. I guess for all of us it is also a great opportunity to learn how creating an employer brand for a recognised consumer brand!What makes a Grouponer? 3 personal traits that you think will help candidates succeed working in Groupon.
Jacek: I think it’s partly the willingness to aid others, and partly determination in doing so. Also, cats. You gotta start loving cats before working here, even if they only live on the screen of your computer!
Ola: If you want to become a Grouponer, you need to stay open-minded, because there are lots of opportunities in there – you just need to find them 🙂 Also, it’s good to be well-organized and supportive – we value team work and helping each other.
Jakub: Make sure you smile! Yes, smile a lot! Another very important thing is empathy and willingness to develop yourself. I think it’s a great place to spread your wings.
What are your future career plans? Are you planning to develop within employer branding or talent acquisition space?
Jacek: Employer branding is clearly something that I am looking to develop myself in. It takes a special set of skills to attract others to your company and show them what you’ve got to offer without making it sound redundant or corny. I hope this ambassadorship will allow me to pursue this career path, showing me some of the tricks of your own which seem to make people in Katowice, some of whom I know, want to work here so badly 😉
Ola: Yes, definitely! I do enjoy working with other people, moreover, to be inspired, I often need other people, that’s why I enjoy being an ambassador so much. I do have previous experience in the matter and I know it’s something I naturally love doing.
If you could turn back time and start university once again, is there anything you’d do differently? What would be different? (ie. change course of study, meet different people, skip this or other class, learn another language, go on Erasmus exchange, etc.)?
Jacek: I don’t believe a time machine will ever exist, but if I did I would probably try to get into Employer Branding much earlier. Other than that, I’m pretty content with my choices, which broadened my possibilities. Perhaps I would only change my uneventful French classes to Italian, seeing as we have an Italian team on board and I get to hear but not understand its lovely sounds everyday 😉
Ola: I’m not sure if I had chosen another course of study at my university… I’d probably stay where I am, because I found my place there. There’s only one drawback of studying Philology at the University of Silesia – sadly, my department is not in Katowice and we’re a little outside of all the students’ life events. We’re managing well, though 🙂 If I were to give one piece of advice to my younger myself, I would probably say: „gain as much experience as you can, there won’t be any better time to do this!”.
What do you think is the most important for you in the workplace? Is it the atmosphere, growth opportunities, benefits, etc.?
Jacek: It’s the people. As a certain leader would say, Groupon has tremendous people, best people you can imagine! That’s where the mood comes from – slightly laid back and welcoming, definitely an awesome place to be.
Ola: The atmosphere is really important, for sure. I can’t imagine sitting at work surrounded by some moody bears… 🙂 I also value opportunities to improve my skills, both soft and more professional ones.
Jakub: For me it’s all of the things mentioned above. Alright maybe except benefits, because they are only an addition. There’s nothing as important as your co-workers, because they create the atmosphere.
What’s your superpower?
Jacek: We’re supposed to be the Green Rangers, right? Then it must be summoning a Megazord from the bottom of the sea by playing my one and only Flute-o-Dagger!
Ola: I have the perfect pitch – I hear music differently than other people, I don’t need any reference tones – it used to be helpful during my education in music school.
Jakub: I’m able to stop blinking for more than a minute! Oh, and I’m a very, veery patient guy. That counts, right?
What is your dream job? Where do you see yourself in 3-5 years’ time?
Jacek: I guess I’d like to write – whether as a copywriter, a novelist or a video game journalist, it doesn’t make a great difference to me at the moment. What I might miss from that is the feeling of collaboration with other people towards a common goal – something that I have experienced working in my student’s organisation. Wherever I end up, I am certain it’ll be creative and exciting to me every day.
Jakub: I really feel like I’m a part of this place, so I’m looking forward to develop myself here, for now. I see myself in the professional international branding team. I really enjoy that kind of work.
What are your plans for the future?
Ola: Well, I want to run a marathon!
Jacek: Not to plan anything too far into the future but I do have an Erasmus student’s exchange to look forward to soon enough!
Kuba: For now I want to finish my degrees and then will see what life brings me. Whatever it is I think I’ll challenge it.