Two weeks' work experience. Six months later.

Author - Tom

Tom Player

01 April 2020 | 3 min read

Today marks 6 months since I joined Snoop, which isn’t typically the most notable milestone I grant you... but considering that life here began as two weeks of work experience, every month feels cause for celebration.

Due to current circumstances we’re forced to work remotely at the moment, so as much as I’d love to be writing this alongside Snoop dog(g) Ginnie and the rest of my colleagues in Waterloo, I’ve got my parents and a few pigeons outside to keep me company instead. Having said that, apparently Shakespeare wrote King Lear when he was isolating from the plague, so maybe this piece all about my life at Snoop will turn out to be one of my best.   

In truth we’re extremely lucky that remote work is a possibility (something I try to remind myself as I drift towards insanity at home), yet it nonetheless represents a new challenge for Snoop, especially in a crucial period as we push towards public launch. Personally, it’s a challenge that’ll take some getting used to, but I can add it to a long list of learning opportunities that I’m
fortunate to have accumulated over the last 5 months.

Working from home, like so many of the experiences on this list, was something I felt unsure of at first. Would I still be able to contribute without being there in person? Would I feel disconnected from my colleagues? Would I still be able to learn from them without the opportunity to shadow?

As usual, I needn’t have worried. The Snoop team has never been keener to help, to dial me in or to make sure I’m up to date with new developments. Thankfully, its been like this from day one.

I initially joined on a two-week work experience placement yet feared I’d spend the time making tea for people who’d be too busy to learn my name. Or maybe I’d be making the tea for the person who makes the coffee. I wasn’t sure.

Thankfully I couldn’t have been more wrong; in fact our CEO John has probably made more cups of tea for me than vice versa (...although this may be due to my lack of knowledge about Earl Grey).

I was immediately welcomed in by the team and given a range of tasks to get stuck into when I felt ready. I worked with the product team and our partner ‘Hi Mum! Said Dad’ to help plan sprints; with the revenue team to complete competitor analyses; and with the marketing department to investigate and advise on the financial priorities of students. Having completed other work experience placements since graduating last July, it was refreshing and empowering
to finally feel trusted and be granted ample opportunities to prove myself.

I was also incredibly grateful that Snoop supported me during graduate placement applications. I was given time and space to prepare whenever I needed it, and I was taken aback when I received good luck messages on the morning of an assessment centre. I’d only been with them for a week!

Thankfully though, I was asked to carry on past the two weeks and became Snoop’s first intern, and have since been taught how to cleanse merchant records, managed our first round of Beta testing and helped to answer customer queries. New experience after new experience, but always the same support and encouragement from my colleagues.

Snoop has never felt cult-like as some other start-ups appear to be, nor has it felt corporate like the big banks that many of my colleagues previously worked at. There’s no ‘captain’ or ‘first mate’ and we don’t have pump-up meetings at the start of the week, but equally there’s no compartmentalisation in the office and there’s great flexibility in our working hours.

I look back on my first months at Snoop with great fondness and am so grateful to have been given so many opportunities to learn here. I only have a limited list of previous employers to compare against, but my team have set such a high bar in how they’ve supported my development that I can’t help but assume they’re an exception.

As we approach public launch in a couple of weeks, I genuinely can’t wait to see what the future holds for our helpful little robot.

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