Jared Lindzon: Freelance journalist, Public speaker & Media consultant

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My Native Admission Statement: When I began thinking about what I want to do with my life as a child, I decided my life would be well lived if I could “do cool shit and write about it” for a living. Today I not only write about it, I speak about it as well. Whether in the pages of Fast Company, the Guardian, Rolling Stone, the New York Times or my own website, NoWordLimit.Blog, whether on stage with rockstars in New Orleans, political analysts in Dallas or business leaders in Lisbon, my career and my life is an endless pursuit of all things a younger version of myself would categorize as cool, and the stories that result. I’m not where I am because I am a particularly talented writer and journalist; There are far too many writers who are on a much higher level of talent yet are still struggling financially for that to be true. I am where I am because I’m particularly talented at hustling. Whatever your grind, whatever your industry, the talent is only as profitable as the hustle behind it.

How did you get into the industry?

My first foray into journalism was a volunteer gig at my school paper, and I instantly fell in love with it. Within that small ecosystem of the university campus I could see how my work was received by readers everyday, and even see changes on campus that resulted from the stories I pursued. From there I went to journalism school and completed my master’s, but I really owe my career to an unpaid internship at the National Post. Though I didn’t make a penny, it was the most valuable experience of my career thus far.

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Graham McDonnell: International Creative Director, New York Times

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My Native Admission Statement: I am award-winning creative, speaker and lecturer with over fifteen years in the industry, specialising in creating immersive visual stories for a wide variety of brands. Because of my experience in multiple different areas I’d say I rarely have a “go-to solution” and I make sure I put the time in to finding the best solution for the challenge. I love getting into the weeds too, so I’m a stickler for the fine details that give something polish (though this is probably becomes a bad thing at some point!) There was an old commercial in England a few years ago that featured a cat that decided to ‘Be More Dog’. Instead of lounging around all day looking depressed like most cats, it would play fetch in the park, splash in the river and generally be more positive about every scenario. Quite a good way to live your life and definitely gives you some of the best stories to tell 🙂

Career advice to those in your industry?:

The best advice to me was ‘If you’re not happy, change something’. When I was younger I landed a dream job at a company with a great reputation and thought I would end my career there. After three months I’d had enough, booked a flight for South East Asia and didn’t come back for five months! I’d also say you can’t expect to progress if you’re not in the picture, so go to all the events, meet all the people, say yes to all the opportunities. You’d be surprised how quickly doors start to open.

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