In our member spotlight, Laura Frein, CPSM, business development associate for Michael Baker International, took time out of her busy schedule to chat with SMPS. She shared the challenges and rewards of her job and filled us in on her favorite pastime.
What is a typical day like for you? I lead the marketing, business development, and communications for the company’s eastern Pennsylvania region, which includes Philadelphia, the surrounding five counties, and the Lehigh Valley. My work involves the identification and monitoring of program funding, client pre-positioning, assembly of teams, as well as careful crafting of proposals and interviews.
Additionally, I utilize technology and social media to communicate company activities and achievements to the A/E/C industries. This year, I began working with the regional director to publish an internal monthly newsletter that’s distributed to nearly 1,000 staff in five offices throughout Pennsylvania. The newsletter focuses on highlighting the region’s staff and projects, with the ultimate goal of enhancing communications in a user friendly, visually appealing format.
What are the challenges and rewards of the job? Marketing is sometimes overlooked as a function necessary to A/E/C business. Impressing our technical staff with new ideas and a fresh perspective is always a rewarding part of the job of a marketer.
What has been your most meaningful project so far in your career? In 2016 our office moved, and I used the opportunity to create several marketing opportunities, including a video to promote our new location and an open house. The move coincided with our office’s 20th anniversary, so I developed a community service initiative “20 Differences in Celebration of 20 Years” to commemorate the anniversary.
Why is membership in SMPS important to you? How has it helped your firm? SMPS has helped to increase my network and has provided me trusted colleagues who are always available and willing to help in any way they can. Earning my CPSM has helped define me as a marketing leader at my company.
What’s the best career advice you’ve received? Take a seat at the table. It belongs to you. Sometimes, marketers don’t get recognized the way project managers do; however, they are a vital part to meetings and collaborative efforts. If you’re invited to a meeting, take your seat at the table. You’re meant to be there!
What was your childhood dream job? Archeologist
Guilty Pleasure: What can you not live without? TV