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Nadya Olivares

SFU Co-op Student
Communication, Art + Technology › Communication

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Girl standing next to sign that says "Schneider Electric", pointing at sign.
Just go for it. Although the intimidation to apply and work for large companies is very real, you just need to go for it

Starting a Co-op term, at any company, whether it’s a local start-up or a global organization, can be nerve-racking. But it can be even more overwhelming when you research and read “We’re a Fortune Global 500 company operating in over 100 countries with over $27 billion in revenue just in the last year''. Um… sorry? Yes, I was intimidated when started at Schneider Electric, the multinational tech company that provides sustainable and efficient energy and automation digital technologies (a real mouthful, I know!). As a Marketing and Communications Intern at Schneider Electric’s Solar Business, I’ve gotten the opportunity to work with so many professionals around the world. Don’t worry, it’s not as stressful as it sounds. Here are three things I learned working at a multinational company:

1. You Need to Adapt.

Different cultures mean different markets. Since I work with people in other countries such as the United States, Spain, France, and Australia, I needed to learn how to adapt to their ways of promoting and advertising. What works in Canada may not work in other locations, as the target market varies so much depending on the culture. I had the pleasure to learn different approaches to the market in these countries. When I produce work for particular teams, whether creating a landing page for Spanish sales team, or a PowerPoint presentation for the French services team, I had to cater to what would be significant to their culture and market.

2. You Need to be Flexible.

Time zones. Do I need to say more? Because I work with other teams in Europe and Australia, meetings may be challenging to schedule. When scheduling meetings, I have to keep in mind that my work hours may be their after-work hours. Usually, I schedule meetings early in the mornings between 7-9 am, which to them, is late afternoon. So, it’s not a typical 9 to 5, maybe 7 to 3 or 8 to 4 (which I honestly like better anyways!). Flexibility with your work schedule is a must when you work in a company that operates in different continents

3. You Get Opportunities to Lead Your Projects.

With such a high audience, one would think that producing content for a multinational company would have extremely strict guidelines, that there’s almost no room for creativity and leadership. Well, that’s not true at all. I’ve had the opportunity to lead my projects and add some creative elements to my work. I have the freedom to design our website pages, choose its images, and create its copy. With some edits here and there and the final approval from my supervisors, my work consistently gets published for our audience to see.

Working at a multinational Fortune Global 500 company will give you so many opportunities, not only to work with great people in a multicultural environment, but also to improve your professional skills and accomplishments. And as stressful and nerve-racking as it sounds at first, I learned to be confident in myself and my ability to learn. Along the way, I realised just how capable I am. So, here’s my biggest advice: Just go for it. Although the intimidation to apply and work for large companies is very real, you just need to go for it. Never mind the pressure! So what? It’s about the growth of your skills, your talent, and your experience. The skills you’ll learn in the process is invaluable and will make you a stronger candidate for any of your future endeavors.

About the Author

Nadya Olivares

SFU Co-op Student
Communication, Art + Technology › Communication

Posts by Author

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Blog
Business Development & Sales World for Dummies (and Communication Students)

As a Communication major, I’m comfortable with hearing “the medium is the message”, getting lost in 15-page essays, and wondering why a picture of a pipe is in fact, not a pipe (shoutout CMNS 110). Throw me in a tech start-up in a (remote) business development position and well, I’m a touch out of my comfort zone. Keep reading to learn about my experience working in a business role as a Communication major. 

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Imposter Syndrome and Finding My Confidence With Co-op

Michael joined SFU’s Co-op program during his first year and quickly realized one thing as he began the job search process: projecting confidence and composure are key to showing your best points and skills. Continue reading to learn more about how Michael dealt with imposter syndrome and found his confidence with Co-op. 

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What Is It Really Like Working For a Non-Profit?

I have always wanted to work at a non-profit organization. While my main objective during my first Co-op term was to gain experience in the Communication field, that goal to work at a non-profit had always remained in the back of my mind. Keep reading to learn more about my experience working for a non-profit. 

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A Second Term in Government: More of the Same?

Having completed my first work term for Health Canada as a Communications Officer Intern, I was eager to try something new, and the government was not where I believed that was going to happen. That is until I was offered a position at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada...

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Surviving Workplace Politics

Ever been peeved with workplace politics? Have you ever been a victim of office politics? One student shares her experiences from the workplace with tips on how to survive.

 

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Responsibility and Success

One of the most memorable parts of my time in co-op was the collection of accidents, errors, mistakes, and mix-ups that happened in the course of working in the laboratory.

 

Girl standing next to sign that says "Schneider Electric", pointing at sign.
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Blog
What it’s Really Like Working at a Multinational Fortune 500 Company
Co-op Reflections, Professional Development, Intercultural Communication, Culture, International, Workplace Culture, Workplace Success

As a Marketing and Communications Intern at Schneider Electric’s Solar Business, I’ve gotten the opportunity to work with so many professionals around the world. Don’t worry, it’s not as stressful as it sounds. In this blog, I'll talk about some of the things I've learned while working for a multinational Fortune 500 company.

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SFU Co-op Leads to Silicon Valley Dream Job with Google

Steven Phan's professional journey started long before he got a prize job as an interaction designer at Google. The SFU student’s career success started after he enrolled as a SIAT student and took advantage of the school’s co-op program. 

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Developing an Understanding of Non-Profits

Meghan shares the benefits of working at a non-profit based on her experience at the Multiple Sclerosis Society. 

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Canadian Co-op Adventure

Tired of the same ol Vancouver scene?  Want to travel, but think you cant because your student bank account is plummeting somewhere in the negatives?  If you said yes to both these questions, sounds like youre suffering from a classic case of travel bug blues.  But dont worry, theres a simple solution to your ailment.  Start searching for co-op jobs out of town!