iKala Young Talent

At iKala, I excel with self-discipline and enjoy my work by solving problems

Cherry Jiang, Account Executive Intern, iKala Cloud

I graduated from the Department of Applied Economics and Administration with a major in Finance & a minor in International Business. Business degree can lead to so many opportunities but are oftentimes considered a major with low career certainty. Hence, I engaged in so many internships to explore what I was really interested in.

iKala is the sweetest accident in my career path dramatically changed by the pandemic

Initially, I was interested in the startup industry. Since I have worked at a corporation, I believe that an internship in a startup would help me learn more and faster. Nevertheless, with a finance major, I still wanted to give it a try in the financial industry. In fact, I got an internship offer from a bank in April last year. With the new coronavirus outbreak in May, the offer was canceled unexpectedly. It was like a warning telling me that the financial industry is easily affected by the macro environment. So, I thought "it might be better to change to another industry."

Through serendipity, I received information about iKala's internship program. And I was impressed by its culture of horizontal communication and flat organization. After applying for an internship position, I went through the interview process and attained valuable feedback from the interviewer, who gave me a positive experience. After I started my internship, iKala has provided many learning resources for me. For instance, I didn't know what "Cloud" is very well in the beginning, then my mentor found a series of online courses for me to learn.

When I look for an internship and a full-time job, what matters to me is different

The criteria of looking for an internship and a full-time job is different for me. Because there isn't a specific career path for a student who majors in business, I will explore what I want to do in the future during an internship. Therefore, the prospect of a job and whether I could learn practical skills that can be applied to the workplace are important for me.

When looking for a full-time job, I will evaluate stress and culture in the workplace. I hope it won't be stressful at work, and there will be a lively atmosphere in my team. Although my last job tended to be personal and performance-based, I prefer to work as a team in iKala, where there are members leading me and sharing experience with me.

In a highly disciplined and goal-oriented culture, you should take responsibility for your own learning

My last job was regular with fixed working hours, while it is flexible and self-disciplined in iKala. There is no one limiting you how to do your job, but just tell you the goals you have to achieve – It embodies one of iKala's core values "Freedom & Responsibility." Like what my mentor said, "You can make your job easy or difficult when doing an internship here. It all depends on yourself," it is more self-disciplined and different than I thought.

So far, I have made many cold calls, which are challenging but make me enjoy my job. Just like the following says, managers will only tell you goals you have to achieve. If you don't inquire about details, no one will tell you how to do it. Still, if you need any resources , just let the company know and it will provide what you need. It is just like you have to solve all problems on your own. You will learn a lot and push yourself during the process, proposing new and fresh advice and thoughts to the company, and this embodies another iKala's core value "Growth Mindset."

Mastering two sales mindsets – Recognizing your own products and Assisting clients to solve their problems

Many students who study in business would exclude sales from their career plans because they think what sales do is pleasing others. Nonetheless, I remembered when I just entered the university, the chair of our department said, "Sales is the base of the whole business. No matter what you want to do later, you must have a good sales performance first." Consequently, I think it is essential to have the right mindsets for sales. First, you must be confident in your own products, since you have to recognize your products and company, then you can persuade others. Second, the job of sales is not requesting others to buy your products. Instead, what you do is solve pain points for your clients, or assist them to be better.

Embark on a fulfilling journey – iKala's three appeals to students

In addition to free snacks, the awesome work environment and atmosphere are also attractive to students. What's more, colleagues in iKala are pretty friendly. I remembered the first day I went to the office, and my mentor led me to meet coworkers. When they saw me, they said, "Nice to meet you. Hope we will have a chance to work together!" to me warmly. After that, I met other coworkers who I was unfamiliar with, and they asked me to enjoy cookies with them, which made me really appreciate it.

The third point I recommend iKala is that you can truly learn something here. Though the culture of iKala is goal orientation, if you don't know how to execute your mission, your mentor would still lead you to approach goals with patience. For example, I have made so many cold calls recently, and it is a big challenge for me. Thanks to my mentors Billy and Kyle, they always hint me how to reach goals in time, like what information I could ask clients furtherly, or what information about products and the industry I could learn more.

To anyone who wants to join iKala…

If my friend is looking for an internship, I will tell him/her, "If you want to do routine jobs, then you are not suitable to come here. iKala befits those who set their own goals." First, you must recognize the job of sales from the bottom of your heart. Second, you must be very ambitious. Then you can gain something valuable from here.

We are hiring: https://ikala.tv/recruit/

iKala Young Talent

Cloud Customer Engineer: A Great Combination of Technology and Communication

Willie Chiu, Customer Engineer, iKala Cloud

I studied Computer Science back in university, but I realized very early that the work of general software engineers is not my favorite, so at that time, I thought that I should find a job that can make good use of what I have learned at school, fit my personality, and is not about coding all the time—that is why I started my career as a cloud customer engineer.

Cloud Customer Engineer as a "Bridge"

A general software engineer may be familiar with the part he is responsible for, such as the programming languages he wrote or the modules he developed, but he may not have a comprehensive understanding of how the system or architecture is designed. In contrast, cloud customer engineers can look at the customer's engineering structure more comprehensively. They really play the role of a bridge. As a customer engineer, you need to first understand your clients' engineering structure, figure out what their requirements are, transfer them into action items, and then connect them with our solutions.

Therefore, in this work, I think soft skills are very important. Take "communication" as an example, when pointing out the mistakes of others, some people may offend others, but some can use questions to let the counterpart aware of his problems. This skill must be accumulated in the process of both external and internal communication. I think this is why the cloud customer engineer role is very different from general software engineers.

A Work Beyond My Expectations

A cloud customer engineer's job covers pre-sales, architecture planning, system maintenance and technical support, and this is way beyond my expectations. The reason why I call it "beyond expectation" is also related to the atmosphere of the working environment, which I personally feel extremely lucky.

When I first joined the team, I didn't understand anything, but this is a very open environment where everyone can ask questions freely. I won't worry about being discriminated against by other senior colleagues for asking questions, or if my manager will doubt my ability. It can be noticed that people in the team express themselves in a very different way, compared to normal software engineers. They will pay more attention to your feelings and your emotions. You can clearly see from everyone the personalities that are suitable for the job, which might be the reason why we can form a strong team together.

Another thing I think is great is that everyone in our team keeps their innocence, and is very enthusiastic about learning and sharing. In terms of professional skills, we have formed a study group since last year to discuss the latest cloud technology or the frequently-asked product inquiries. In our daily work, we regularly share the problems encountered in work, and everyone will come together to brainstorm and discuss how to solve them better. In addition, we often share methods that can improve our quality and efficiency of work, such as Trello, Notion, or other productivity tools, so that the entire team can improve together.

Learning Ability Is My Greatest Strength

During the interview, I was asked what I think my strength is. I said it was "learning ability" because I had nothing at that time. I didn't have rich internship experience like others when I was a student. And the research field of my Bachelor's and Master's Degree has nothing to do with my current work, but I know very well that there is an inevitable gap between learning and using, and my advantage is that I am very willing to learn, and I can learn quickly.

In addition to cloud technologies, I think the so-called "learning" involves external and internal communications. For instance, I have the sensitivity to feel the effect of languages, so I will pay special attention to how everyone expresses when communicating with different people, and remind myself to have better communication with others. Another example is project management. I used to think that only one good plan was enough, but in the process of working with other members of the team, I realized that one should always have backup plans. I think this really relies on practical experiences—you have to accumulate different experiences to come up with a comprehensive solution.

Most importantly, I am very grateful to have such a great team and working environment, so that I can have so many opportunities to learn, and I will continue to grow on my way of pursuing a cloud customer engineer career.

We are hiring: https://ikala.tv/recruit/

iKala Young Talent

Where Psychology Meets Human Resources, iKala is Just Like my Hogwarts

Mindy Lien, iKala Human Resources Intern

I am currently studying at the Department of Psychology at Fu Jen Catholic University. The atmosphere of the Department of Psychology is different from that of other departments. When a group of people get together and chat, it becomes like a group consultation. Everyone will ask each other "Why do you think you feel this way?" Therefore, I think In addition to the development of professional knowledge, what I have learned most school is soft skills, which allow us to think from different perspectives and have a clear logic to analyze the emotions of others and that of myself.

Applying Psychology in the Human Resources Field

There are two different discipline clusters in our department, one is Industrial and Commercial Psychology and the other is Counseling and Consulting Psychology, so that students can choose according to their own areas of interest. Industrial and Commercial Psychology, which I chose, includes marketing, user experience and human resources, so I get to lay a solid foundation for the development of my career.

I think the advantage of my psychology background in the human resources work lies in the "evaluation". We attach great importance to experimental design and statistics. Applying these skills to work, we can use statistical methods to evaluate whether the courses are helpful to employees and use data to convince others. The professional ability of needs assessment is also very useful for understanding target audiences, setting course goals, and finally leading to a comprehensive training plan that can really help colleagues.

Factors to Look for in My Ideal Job

When it comes to choosing jobs, what I care most is learning and growth: Does what I can learn in this position fit my personal career plan? Can I continue to grow here? Secondly relationship between colleagues. I really like the feeling that everyone works together for the same goal. Third, company culture. You can understand what the company expects of its employees and how it treats its employees. I also believe that it is necessary to truly agree with and conform to the company's culture to lead a happy and fulfilling career.

Compared to traditional companies with relatively rigid systems and organizations, I am more inclined to startups, with a lively atmosphere, close relationships with colleagues, and greater flexibility that allows employees to explore and grow.

My First Real Taste of Working in an Enterprise

Human Resources Intern at iKala is my first real taste of work. Before I came here, I didn't know much about iKala. I only remembered that it is a very lively company. The decisive factor for me to join iKala was that during the peer interview, I really felt that the atmosphere of the company is what I yearn for. In addition, since I was also interested in marketing, iKala's AI influencer marketing service KOL Radar soon piqued my interest. I was looking forward to working as a human resources intern, but at the same time taking a glimpse of what people in KOL Radar team do.

My work as a human resources intern includes interview invitation, recruit information updates, interview tests arrangement and assistance in the organization of internal training courses. After working in iKala for a few months, I deeply feel that this is a very dynamic company. Whenever I share my internship experience here with my classmates, everyone envy the unique company culture and the working atmosphere here.

Although I am not very good at expressing my inner thoughts to everyone, I really love the colleagues I met here and feel extremely thankful for their help and guidance. In the past, I always felt that I am like jack of all trades but master of none, but after coming to iKala, my mentors praised me a lot and let me know what I am good at it. Even if my mentors are very busy, they will always take time to discuss with me as long as I have questions.

I really like the quote from Professor Albus Dumbledore in Harry Potter: "Help shall always be given at Hogwarts, to those who ask for it." To me, iKala is like Hogwarts, as long as I call for it, someone will lend a helping hand. I am very happy that my first internship was at iKala, where I met versatile colleagues and broaden my horizons for the future.

We are hiring: https://ikala.tv/recruit/

iKala Young Talent

Joining iKala Is a Beautiful Encounter in My Life

Jade Chien, Account Executive / Sales Specialist, KOL Radar

Last spring, I was supposed to be pursuing graduate studies in the UK, but I returned to Taiwan due to the global COVID-19 pandemic. In October, I was given chance to participate in a digital transformation forum, and iKala's COO Keynes was one of the speakers. I didn't mean to search jobs on that event, but after Keynes's sharing, I was deeply impressed. It was at that time that I made a bold decision to submit my resume to Keynes in person. After several rounds of interviews, I became a member of KOL Radar's Account Management team.

Based on my digital knowledge and the learning from my master's degree, I know that "AI-driven influencer marketing solution" is on the trend. Moreover, being a Facebook, YouTube and Google partner, iKala demonstrates a strong technical capability and provides a solid total solution. I have always had a passion for "data-driven marketing", so when I heard that KOL Radar can build up precise and outstanding performance influencer marketing with data, I felt very excited.

Education to Employment

Many people consider the gap between education and employment a big problem for fresh graduates, but to me, I understand that what I learn at school and what I do at work will never be the same. With that being said, whenever I find something corresponding to what I learn at school in the workplace, I would feel a sense of accomplishment. For example, we practiced finding insights through data as our homework at school, and this is quite similar to writing closing reports for customers. Therefore, every time I write a closing report, I will be more convinced of what I learned in the past.

When I first entered iKala as a contractor, I was still a graduate school student who had to work during the day and study at night. Nevertheless, due to iKala's culture of "Freedom and Responsibility", I can have greater flexibility to face such a tight schedule.

I used to be an obedient person who followed all rules blindly, but after studying in the UK, I found that we are living in an ever-changing world that no one can tell us what to do next, so we must learn to be independent and take ownership of our life. This is what I learn from the experience of studying in the UK, and what makes me fit in iKala's culture.

Another thing I like about iKala is that everyone is not satisfied with the status quo and continues to strive for the better. Plus, the OKR system allows me to keep moving forward and sticking to the company's goal. Besides professional training, people here search for additional online courses on their own or sign up for language courses off work. It is not too much to say that everyone here can "work hard, play hard".

An Opportunity to Fulfil My True Potential

After some time in the account management team, I found that at the end of the campaign, a question often asked by our enterprise customers was "Do you have any suggestions for our future campaign?" I soon realized that I enjoyed the process of providing professional advice. My manager also see my potential and encouraged me to transfer internally to the sales team. 

An account manager should be a good communicator. Externally and internally, one must be able to clearly deliver the details of work, and master time management; as for a salesperson, besides communicational skills, a thorough understanding of the company's products and services is of importance. Not just KOL Radar, but the landscape of the pan-iKala Group. Although it takes more effort to get acquainted with different products and services, as long as we can bring more value to our customers, I think it is worth it.

If I could turn back the clock to October 2020, I would make the same decision to drop off my resume in person. I am really thankful for this beautiful encounter in life, and I look forward to exploring more possibilities here.

iKala Young Talent

Setting a Clear Vision for my Career in a Learning Organization

Zain Chung, KOL Relations Specialist, KOL Radar

I didn't have much work experience when I was a student, nor a clear vision for my career, so although I was about to graduate from university, I still chose to start with an internship at KOL Radar, then strived for the opportunity to become a full-time employee here.

A Structured Employee Career Development Plan

Facing my first job after graduation, what I value most is "career prospects". The reason for choosing iKala's KOL Radar is that I believe I can grow rapidly in this ever-changing industry; at the same time, when I was browsing jobs, iKala was one of the few that mentioned learning and development. Thus, I decided to join iKala and become a member of the KOL Relations (KR) team at KOL Radar.

After entering iKala, I can feel that the company is putting emphasis on employee career development. For example, the CDT (Career Development Table) allows new employees to discuss their expectations for work and their personal career development plan with their managers. This way, not only can new employees understand the company's goals and strategies, the management can also know how to allocate resources to help each team member to grow.

In the first few months, a mentor will be assigned to new employees. I am very grateful for my mentor's encouragement, so that I can set higher goals, and continue to challenge myself.

How I Create a Sense of Accomplishment

In addition to improving my skills to maintain KOL relations, I think my best learning so far is "internal communication". We work closely with different teams at KOL Radar, so in the weekly KR meeting, we share the challenges and best practices of cross-departmental communication with each other. Every time when I am reviewing the meeting minutes or the closing report, I can feel that I have grow along the way, and this becomes the motivation for me to move forward.

In the past, I always felt that I was the one being helped. Now I can work independently and I have the opportunity to lead interns. Since I also started as an intern, I can better understand their problems, guide them to ask the questions they have in mind, and think about how to make interns grow from different perspectives.

When it comes to KOL relations professional skills, I can now manage more than 300 influencers within a month, which I can never imagine before joining the team. Furthermore, after working with so many influencers, I develop my own standard operating procedure for managing micro-influencers. The procedure was then endorsed by my manager, and shared among the team. I can really feel a sense of accomplishment with this.

My Suggestions for KOL Relations Enthusiasts

One thing that I love about iKala is its transparency. We can be updated on the company's goal in our weekly team meeting, and the C-Suite also shares the business situation in the bi-weekly TGIF all-hands meeting. I won't feel forced or obsessed, but I make better decisions at work, at the same time stick to the organization's goal.

As a KOL Relations specialist, one should be good at communicating with strangers, because you never know which influencer you are going to face. Therefore, for those who are interested in KOL Relations, I suggest you participate in extracurricular activities, or take part-time jobs and internships beforehand. And for young talents who are interested in influencer marketing and data solutions, I consider the internship at KOL Radar a good opportunity, because you can work with sales, marketing, product, and even the tech team, and you can definitely broaden your horizons.