The best business advice, opinion, news and expertise in Greater Manchester and further afield.

Friday, 13 February 2015

Member Blog: Pressure is the catalyst for results

Pressure is the catalyst for results, says Natalie Merrison, Head of Affiliates at Active Win Media. 

As a company expands, so does the workload. The incredible expansion that Active Win has undergone in its first year of business has resulted in vast opportunities for the team and an immense workload for all involved.

As Head of Affiliates, I am responsible for ensuring our affiliate programme is of the highest standard for our clients. I manage a team of ten and a budget in excess of £6M.

I firmly believe that pressure is the catalyst to getting results.

Being part of a fast- paced environment often puts substantial demands on people and requires well-honed organisational skills. Staying organised is key to everything I do. I employ basic strategies to keep on top of my job and ensure everything is done on time.

Good planning can help diminish stress levels. I develop logical (and realistic) plans that can be broken down into manageable tasks.  I write endless ‘to do’ lists and trust the ‘task’ bar on the computer to remind me what needs to be done from day to day. My inbox is colour co-ordinated so I know what I need to chase up, and from whom. In this respect it’s a great help having a structured set of departments.

As a team we try to go out socially regularly so we can relax around each other and have conversations about other areas of our lives. Team activities are always beneficial and can really bring the team together. I am currently planning our next team bonding day for summer.

My advice to anyone in this type of environment is to not take things to heart. When facing deadlines in any fast-paced industry, it’s easy to become stressed, especially when you’re spinning so many plates. But take a moment to stop and check that you’re spinning the right plates. Do they align with the company’s /clients vision and goals?

I find it helps to keep a level head when completing the task in hand.

Maintaining a healthy work and home life balance is also crucial. It’s important to not carry the weight of stress around with you. I often take my laptop home at weekends; however, I try to leave it in the office during the week. Remaining organised allows you to stay on top of things so that you don’t fall behind and create unnecessary stress.

Don’t be afraid to go above and beyond to get results, but don’t forget that having time to yourself is vital and results in consistency and happiness - as opposed to burning bright and burning fast!
Leaving work knowing you have done the best you can guarantees satisfaction and makes you look forward to continuing the next morning.