My Name Is Lauren Maffeo — This Is Why I Joined Aha!

Have you ever felt called to a certain career? Like you couldn’t imagine doing anything else? Before I knew what news really was, I was drawn to it. My mom swears that as a toddler, I announced my name along with the newscasters.

An internship at my local news station sealed the deal when I was 16. I loved that journalism allowed me to write, produce, speak to an audience, and learn something new each day.

The rapid pace and constant excitement perfectly fit my personality. I knew I had found my calling.

I think we all know what happened next. The economy crashed and dragged the news business under. Countless formerly full-time jobs turned into freelance roles. Anyone with Internet connectivity could produce “news”, and objectivity went out the window. In today’s media landscape, pundits are the new Cronkite; those who scream the loudest take the most cash home.

So at first, I tried to fight fate. A networking event at General Assembly’s London campus opened my eyes to the city’s startup scene, and before long, I found myself reporting on tech news. I earned bylines at The Next Web, The Guardian, Mic, and more. My articles were cited by other sources, including The Atlantic (my favorite magazine).

I was living my dream, yet I felt unfulfilled. Because I was freelancing, article assignments could be scarce. To supplement reporting, I gained great experience in other areas of digital media. I have held roles as a Product Manager of a B2B video series; Content Lead at the world’s largest digital consumer study; and Senior Associate on the Digital Marketing team at a global firm.

If this sounds like an identity crisis, you’re correct. But through every new adventure, I remained aware of my mission: use narrative storytelling to explore how the world is evolving. My core interests never changed; I just couldn’t find the right home for this mission in a new media industry that seems to change each second.

Had you told me in school that I’d join a software company in my mid-twenties, I would have laughed or cried. Laughed because the idea seemed absurd, or cried because I’d be selling out. Little did I know that it would become my long-awaited home.

I first heard about Aha! when Brian’s articles on career advice began appearing in my LinkedIn feed. One after the other resonated with me. When I saw that they were hiring a Content Specialist, my interest was piqued. And after Brian published his article, “Use These Cover Letters That CEOs Read”, I had no excuse to keep postponing what I wanted.

What, exactly, was it that I wanted? To start, I wanted a boss who’s self-aware enough to write about the topics Brian covers. But several aspects of the job description served as my Aha! moment:

“We are committed to being great, and we want someone who:

  • Wants to help drive the voice of a pioneering company
  • Is seeking a career-defining opportunity and a proven, results-oriented team which has sold multiple software companies”

Above all else, there was this:

“We are looking for a forward-leaning marketing content specialist who wants to reach an established global audience — and jump on a rocket. If this is you, we want to hear from you!”

Aha! – you heard from me. You gave me a seat on your rocket. Lift off.

That is why I joined Aha! — and why you should too.