Connections

Connections

On my way to work, I swiftly maneuver down streets to reach the formal lobby.  I enter from my building’s stoic, empire exterior with its old fashioned elevator, to the stripped down, ultra casual and modern, two floor workspace I office in. The contrast is significant. It's strikingly peculiar how removed my office seems.  It should be out of place, yet my intuition tells me that everything has its place and follows the D.C. hallmark of connectedness.

 

Everything is connected here; lines are frequently crossed, creating a very unique and complex symbiotic relationship. Nowhere is this more apparent than between the lines crossed between government and private business. The advanced technology marketing company that I work with this summer is highly specialized and on the small side. However, it is not insulated or disconnected from being influenced and being an influencer.

 

Organic Marketing Analytics is a multi-continent operation with a base in D.C., a programming team in Eastern Europe and office help beaming in from India. The office is entirely paperless and enabled by the ever changing and all-knowing web. In this way we are a case example of global connectedness, but we also claim connectedness to happenings in Washington. From the effects of the net neutrality decisions to government surveillance, what goes on in D.C. has a dramatic effect on how and why we do business. For example, the rulings of the FCC on giving internet providers more power (non-net neutrality) puts a squeeze on future business expansion and will necessitate participating in lobbying for our industry.

 

This is the beauty of D.C.: everyone in some way is connected to everyone else in a race to personal and professional excellence. You can feel the tangible and sensitive race to dominance surrounding you and there is no naiveté around the value of human potential. As an intern, and just a student living in D.C. for the summer, it is such a unique opportunity to be part of an incredibly dynamic professional environment.

 

TWC Networking

Speaking of connections, the invitational networking opportunity provided by TWC that I secured a spot for went very well. I brushed up on a variety of networking skills that had gotten rusty and met some engaging and politically active TWC veterans. I believe in always taking advantage of growth opportunities as a crucial part in developing the professional prowess to keep afloat in our modern day hyper-meritocracy, and this is one example of such opportunities.

 

Soft-Side

Transportation in D.C. is synonymous with the best underground/aboveground travel option: the D.C. metro. While this is a great public service, it sometimes overshadows the utilitarian and well thought out bike service and route system. You may hear Capital Bikeshare and their red bicycle service classified as touristy, but established locals will tell you that’s nonsense. The fact that D.C. was voted one of the top bicycle friendly cities portrays it in a perfect Soft-Side light: one that supports leisure and a healthy and active lifestyle.

 

Capital Bikeshare bikes are a great and relatively inexpensive way to get around. I can ride the network of bike routes from work almost all the way to where I live in Silver Spring. It’s also a convenient way to get to places like the Smithsonian’s National Zoo and the quaint and historic Georgetown area. Having the ability to bike in D.C. makes the vast, and sometimes overwhelming, city feel more connected with a smaller town vibe, definitely Soft-Side worthy.

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