Eemeli & Daniel’s Blog – Year as the Corporate Relations Coordinators

The Life of the Corporate Relations Coordinator(s)

Greetings KY, and welcome aboard! If you are reading this, it would appear that the position of Corporate Relations Coordinator (currently Sales Coordinator) at KY interests you. You are right to be intrigued, as this role is one of the most career-preparing and wonderful positions that KY has to offer. In this post we, Daniel Harper Kakkonen and Eemeli Paunonen, the two current Sales Coordinators here at KY will be nurturing your thirst for knowledge regarding this mysterious position. If you are too busy to read this but would like to hear more about the position, you can contact us directly, our contact details are below.

Daniel: 044 079 0000

Eemeli: 040 729 7940

We would be happy to talk to you and answer any questions you may have. However, if your thirst for knowledge can’t wait and you want to learn more NOW, then we strongly encourage you to read on! 

If you want to know what life was like during a ‘normal’ year before covid when there was only one Sales Coordinator, the link to our mentor and predecessor Mark MacMoffat’s text can be found here.

What do Corporate Relations Coordinators do?

Put shortly and simply, a lot of things. The main aspect of our job, however, is to coordinate the corporate relations of KY, i.e. take care of the relationship between KY and its corporate partners (firms). By doing so, we make sure that you, our members, have an even better chance of landing your dream job now and in the future. It’s a win-win situation, as by doing this, we also ensure that our partners are able to recruit the smartest and most talented business students that Finland has to offer here at Aalto University.

This responsibility is carried out in various ways. A large part of our work is performed in our team of three, the “love triangle” of us two Corporate Relations Coordinators and the KY Board’s Corporate Relations responsible Tuomas Takanen. Day to day work consists of fulfilling our contracts with our corporate partners, meeting them as well as finding new partners and negotiating new contracts with current ones.

We organize events with CORE (Corporate Relations committee), where companies have a chance to meet you face-to-face (or screen-to-screen), and through social media we make sure that our partners’ recruitment announcements reach our members and our members have seamless access to them. All in all, it is extremely rewarding to know that by doing our job we are working for a good cause which has vast benefits for the community and all stakeholders involved.

What can you learn here?

Just as there’s a lot to do, there’s also a whole lot to learn. We’ve tried to highlight some of the most important skills we have learned during our year. KY is an amazing environment to learn new skills, as the people around you are incredibly supportive and want to help you succeed!

Time management: As a Corporate Relations Coordinator, there’s always something to do and many different projects and meetings to participate in each day. The job has encouraged us to put all those time management tips and tricks to good use! 

Confidence: Interacting with others is a significant part of this job. From making sales pitches over the phone and having meetings with companies’ representatives to training volunteers, it sure can feel quite intimidating in the beginning. Luckily, the environment is supportive and the people you interact with are pleasant enough that learning these skills becomes rewarding and fun! 

Communication: Be it over the phone or through email, you keep in touch with the companies continuously. We have both developed our own distinct styles of business communication and answering those emails has become a welcome diversion from more serious matters. Knowing how to concisely communicate the key points is a very valuable skill to have in our free time as well!

Leadership skills: The Corporate Relations Coordinator acts as the vice chair of our Corporate Relations Committee, CORE. In addition, there have been a lot of other smaller projects where we have been the ones to plan and lead sales efforts and train others, usually our wonderful volunteers. These experiences have given us ample opportunities to practice and improve our leadership skills and learn new things about ourselves in the process. 

Other useful and fun skills: We could continue this list pretty much forever, but to list a few more, project management, drafting contracts, making sales materials, managing a budget, using tools such as Procountor, modifying websites and so on. There’s something to learn for everyone!

Our most important stakeholders

Working for KY’s Corporate Relations sector gives you the opportunity to work with some of KY’s most important stakeholders. One of the best aspects of this job is the people it enables you to meet both in and outside of KY. A huge part of this job involves meeting representatives of our corporate partners. As Corporate Relations Coordinator, we get to learn so much about different companies, and get the opportunity to connect with the people who work for them. It is a privilege to be able see all of the amazing career opportunities that different sorts of companies have to offer for business students, up close.

That’s obviously not all, since a lot of our work involves KY’s volunteers. Through different projects we get to cooperate with our clubs, subcommittees, committees and project teams and work with their corporate relations people. And at the end of the day, we do all this for the KY members and in a way one of our most important stakeholders is the whole KY community. Meeting our members and chatting about corporate relations (and other stuff too) is not only getting to know new people, but a way to get ideas and feedback on how to develop corporate relations at KY.

What should you look forward to in this role?

There are a whole bunch of different things to look forward to as Corporate Relations Coordinator of KY. Here we have cherry picked the best of the bunch.

Working Environment: I can’t think of a more motivating yet laid back working environment than KY. Everyone working here has the same drive to succeed, but the environment is free of unnecessary negativity and pressure. The work is very flexible, meaning that it is easier to manage time, possibly balance work with studies and morph your working routine into a routine that suits you best and allows you to optimize your own performance.

Responsibility: At KY, everyone is treated equally, meaning that we are also all given lots of responsibility. There are not many other workplaces that enable students at the early stages of their career to take full responsibility for such large matters, but here at KY it is made possible. This is incredibly motivating and allows room for a lot of creativity in taking the Corporate Relations sector into the direction we want to. Even though some work is fairly routine, there are lots of tasks that require us to really use our brains. We are constantly planning and thinking about what’s best for our members, and Corporate Partners.

People: It may sound like a cliché, and it probably is, but one of the best things about working here is the people we get to work with and meet along the way. Be it employees, ex-employees, firm representatives or everyday members, seeing how our work helps the community and other stakeholders definitely makes our job rewarding. The KY Office is full of students at different stages of their studies, which means that everyone is on the same wavelength. This makes it extremely easy and fun to cooperate with everyone within our organization as well.

Comments from Tuomas, Board member responsible for Corporate Relations, Work & Career:

I have to admit, these times have been unusual and challenging. I’m glad that despite the circumstances we have formed a tremendous trio with Daniel and Eemeli. We work as a team: everything that we do, we do together – Negotiations with companies, leading our awesome Corporate Relations Committee CORE, and developing the Corporate Relations sector or ‘Voittis’, as we like to call it.

Our sector is the one that brings money to KY and helps our members connect with their future employers. The task has been challenging, but it is also rewarding. It has been amazing to see how we, with Eemeli, Daniel and CORE, have overcome these challenges that the current situation has thrown at us.

It has been pleasant to work with Eemeli and Daniel, as they are confident, rational and self-imposed persons. If you want a workplace where you can develop yourself, but also have fun and unforgettable experiences, you know what to do. Become a part of the KY Office, become Corporate Relations coordinator!

Should you apply? Are you a fitting candidate?

Of course you should! In our opinion, a fitting candidate is simply someone who is interested in developing KY’s corporate relations and learning new skills. Nothing in this job is necessarily hard to learn or really requires previous experience – after all you have the best teachers, us and Tuomas 😉

There are few “must haves” for this position, simply put the ideal candidate should be…

  • Interested in corporate relations and KY
  • Constantly willing to improve and learn new skills
  • Trustworthy and able to manage their own work

To wrap things up…

It’s a strange feeling to be writing this blog as it feels like we just started and had a whole year ahead of us. Time has flown by incredibly fast but luckily, we’ll always have the memories, friends and skills we have gained during our time at KY. The year has felt so rewarding and we’ve had a one-of-a-kind chance to be a part of something truly important – now is YOUR chance to get to continue our work 🙂

Thanks for getting this far and best of luck from both of us!

 

Daniel Harper Kakkonen & Eemeli Paunonen
Sales Coordinators 2020-2021
daniel.harperkakkonen@ky.fi & eemeli.paunonen@ky.fi
044 079 0000 (Daniel)
040 729 7940 (Eemeli)