It all started with Jelly...

Our comms assistant Maryam reflects on her time working at Jelly as she heads off to new and exciting opportunities. Starting her journey with us as an intern, she explores her time here, the challenges she's faced, and the opportunities she's had working with our team.

Friday 14 June 2024

I applied for a work experience week at Jelly’s sister company, Three Blind Mice (now Think Artfully) where I spent the week working with Think Artfully & Jelly assessing their social media and having insightful conversations with different people in the business including Nicki, Charlie and Chris, who taught me all about the tricks of the trade & recognised my keenness to get stuck in with a role in this industry.

After completing my week, I was certain I was going to be back on the dreaded job hunt, endlessly searching for that part-time role that would fit perfectly with my full-time degree. To my surprise, I received an email from the team asking me to come back full-time for an entire summer and were willing to keep me on to support me throughout my degree! I couldn’t believe I had found my first ever job just like that. The opportunity to work in such a brilliant place at only eighteen years old was not something I thought was possible. I suppose the rest was history as I spent two and half years at Jelly.

I had a brilliant summer that year! My first project was a big one. I was brought onto a fundraising project that Jelly was planning with DrawFor where we asked our artists to create prints we could sell to raise money for Afghan Refugees in the UK. This was an incredibly rewarding project and it taught me so much about how to communicate with artists, how to work with external partners and showed me the work we do at Jelly could impact society in a meaningful and positive way. The project was a great success! We managed to raise over £14,000 which was donated to the brilliant charity Choose Love. Having enjoyed a great summer at Jelly, I couldn’t wait to learn more from the team and enjoy the rest of my time there.

Working at Jelly has been brilliant, although admittedly I did struggle to fit in at the beginning.  As I am from a South Asian background, I hadn’t really met many people in the creative industry who looked like me. Because of this, I did have a tinge of imposter syndrome. “Am I meant to be here?”, “Do I fit in?”, “Maybe this isn’t right for me?” were all part of the questions that swirled around in my mind. While I did feel this way starting at Jelly, the team reassured me that I was meant to be here by demonstrating to me that the work I was doing was incredibly helpful for the business and they had always pushed me further to learn more, sharpen my skills and really get stuck in. As a Muslim entering into the workplace there were specific accommodations I needed to ensure I was able to practise in the workplace, for example I needed a place to pray and that was swiftly given to me during my first few days with Jelly. These efforts, combined with the work I was doing really made me feel like I did belong to this brilliant team and the ability to progress in a career in the creative industry.

Throughout my degree, I was able to work full-time summers, busy holiday periods, cut back time at work to focus on uni and pick up work wherever I may have left off. This opportunity at Jelly has created an unbelievable foundation for the rest of my career that I genuinely believe I could not have got anywhere else. Working at Jelly has allowed me to develop so many new skills and truly become a ‘social media maverick’ that has allowed me to get other opportunities. I got a role as head of marketing at a non-profit organisation soon after joining Jelly; I learned new skills to help grow my small business and my experience here allowed me to get an internship at a huge corporate company! This was the icing on the cake and the cherry on top for me. Everything I have learned at Jelly is going to inform the rest of my career and I can’t wait to see where this experience will take me.

Thank you team Jelly!