When I first interviewed at EMC, there was a recession happening in the US; EMC was laying off employees, the concept of hiring recent college grads was far from in vogue; and I had no legitimate experience for the job I hoped to land.
How did I get in?
The Boston Marathon comes immediately to mind.
To help convince the marketing department at EMC that they needed to hire me, I waged a PR campaign. Every couple of days something new would arrive at their offices which I hoped would get them buzzing, curious, and wanting more.
One of the campaign elements was a giant map of the world with a pin point over Hopkinton, Mass. I wrote something that suggested that with me doing PR for EMC, Hopkinton would be on the global map for people due to EMC, as well as for the Boston Marathon. (That was a bold concept as EMC was fairly small and little known at the time. Today, if you Wikipedia Hopkinton, it appears, however, the prediction came true. Wink.)
For the notion of brand-drafting and more, I love having EMC associated with the Boston Marathon. They are two enduring brands suggesting "the ultimate" in their space. They require passion, drive, mental determination, and the guts to do what many others would fear attempt. They are not for everyone -- but for those who have what it takes, there is no equal.
This week marked the running of the Boston Marathon. People pack elbow to elbow, helicopters hover overhead, VIPs make speeches, and photographers work to capture the electric mood and the gigantic scale of the packed crowd.
EMC made the Marathon our own this year. We hosted in our homes, and celebrated in our headquarters, about 30 employees and customers who trained, and flew in from around the world to run this race. EMC athletes from Hong Kong to Brazil took part.
This week also marked a series of cool awards for EMC in the space of being a great place to work for the college-aged set -- Collegegrad.com named EMC a best employer for new grads, interns, and masters grads alike. (If you want to apply to EMC or connect with others about working there, check out www.emc.com/careers and the EMC page on Facebook.)
EMC's college grads have long been making EMC their own. They're doing work other companies might say "falls beyond their years in the business." They're helping to set the pace for the industry and the bar of what can be achieved. And they're also doing stuff that makes EMC just cooler to be part of. For example, a recent Marketing new college hire is behind a space at EMC HQ called "The Square." It has a Starbuck's-like coffee bar for lattes, hot soups, and healthy-foods to go. It has a large flat panel that broadcasts CNN, CNBC and happenings like the induction of a US President. It has a store where you can buy EMC gear, 500 gig home networked storage equipment, and candy bars. And it has a large gathering space with upbeat music where business meetings are a bit more personal, where the social media crew can hold Tweetups, and where we celebrate events such as a book launch dedicated to EMC Working Mothers and an Open House dedicated to our EMC Marathon Runners from around the world.
Where You Have to Run to Keep Up
In the realm of happenstance brand affinity and an anecdote so perfect for this post you'd think it was scripted...
A few weeks ago I asked a colleague who also joined EMC as a recent college grad about 20 years ago, "If you were a recent college grad evaluating all the top companies today, do you think you'd still choose EMC?" His reply, "Absolutely. The culture of EMC is such that you have to run to keep up." The statement was finished with a wide smile and a head nod-- a gesture that said, "and man, that type of environment is exhilarating for folks who get into this type of pace and stimulation.
--------- Talk Back ---------------
Would you still pick your company as the place for you today?
Think back to those days you were interviewing at your company. Were you lucky enough to have your vision come true?
If not, check out some of the amazing job search and career help blogs today. A few that I'm aware of, and visit often due to my day job at EMC, are:
*Note: These blogs/sites marked with an (*) syndicate my blog.
Photos from HopkintonMarathonCommitte.org and NuzhatMKarim.