Akshada Ananthakrishnan

"It is very important to keep your eyes and ears open for any placement opportunity that may be available"
About my career

My first job was as a copywriter at an advertising agency in Mumbai. I had a few contacts in the industry from my previous internships, that and the degree from Man Met helped me secure my first job. Before I did the MSc International Creative Advertising programme at Man Met, I was very interested and curious about the digital advertising and marketing industry because of its rising potential. However, my knowledge was limited. The course exposed me to the digital space and by the time I returned home to India, digital marketing and advertising had picked up. So my education at Man Met gave me the upper hand at jobs that required digital knowledge and experience.

In my experience, research is the most valuable skill that Man Met has taught me. Throughout the course every paper, project and module required me to research and learn as much as I possibly could about the industry: trends, customers experience etc. My current job requires me to communicate a bank’s products and services to its customers, on a digital platform, in a very competitive market. This is not possible by just posting a message on social media. It requires a thorough understanding of the target audience, the market trends and other unexplored channels. The initiative and the effort I put into research is valued and appreciated by my peers and seniors.

Communication is a skill that will help you stand out. Develop the skill of communicating with confidence. I really worked hard on communicating well during presentations and interactions with faculty/ guest lecturers. This will get you noticed as it also shows passion and interest towards what you’re doing. Everyone appreciates that. So don’t shy away from talking to someone at a student meet, or a guest lecturer or even your classmate.

The second skill to work on is taking initiative. Be it a group project or even a simple class representative task, take a step forward and take on the responsibility. It shows leadership skills and also helps you connect well with your peers and faculty. Also take initiative in bringing something new to the table as often as possible. Be it a new idea or sharing something with your faculty and mates that you thought was interesting. People remember you and it shows your range of knowledge.

My top tip for students is…

My top tip would be to develop contacts and keep people informed about what you are studying and your area of interest. People really do help. Don’t restrict yourself to a certain industry but rather be open to any opportunity. I had never thought of Miss India UK or the entertainment industry to get work experience in but I’m glad I took it because the networking skills I gained and the digital experience I got boosted my portfolio which in turn helped me get my current job.

I’m inspired by…
Why I love Manchester Met

The cultural diversity is the biggest strength of Man Met and I personally benefited a lot from it. The best part about studying abroad is that you get to meet students from different parts of the world. I had some truly wonderful classmates who made the course fun. Moreover, you learn a lot from them and they from you.