Ro Izzetpanah has held many positions in her career. Finance specialist with the Government of Canada. Customer Service Representative for a major national bank. Manager of Marketing for an amateur baseball team.

But what some might call “job hopping” or indecisiveness is actually, for Izzetpanah, reflective of her broader philosophy on marketing communications.

It all comes down to authenticity.

“The further you get from your authentic self the more it can be seen through, and to succeed in communications I think that staying true to a voice, and being able to act in a digital world the same way that you do in real life, earns respect you and allows people to believe in your brand,” says Izzetpanah.

A space for like-minded professionals

Izzetpanah currently works in digital communications with the Senate of Canada and is a member of IABC Ottawa. She says she joined because she wanted to network with other professionals and exchange ideas with like-minded professionals working in working the same space. Since joining she’s found value in the fun events and inspirational speakers. It’s just one part of her unique approach to career-building.

The other half? Her commitment to authenticity.

Finding authenticity

There is no denying that the rise of the internet has been a boon to marketing and communications professionals. There are now more tools than ever available to reach audiences. But to Izzetpanah it’s also changed some interactions for the worse. “I think that when whether you’re in marketing, public relations or really any communications role, the point of the internet is to create relationships,” says Izzetpanah.

The problem, she says, is that it’s difficult to see those relationships through the numbers that frequently dominate internet marketing campaigns.

“As communications professionals are paid to produce results it’s easy to get caught up in the numbers and information that you can provide to a client, things like x amount of impressions on their company’s name or logo,” she says. “But as humans we crave real things – it’s in our nature, to care about raw, real things.”

Those brands that are willing to show their flaws and connect with audiences on a human level will find more lasting success, says Izzetpanah.

Always something to learn

That commitment to authenticity also informs Izzetpanah’s broader career strategy.

I move from place to place because I believe there’s something to learn in each one of those industries

She’s held several positions at multiple organizations – including Correctional Service of Canada, TD, the Ottawa Champions – in just a few years. “I’ve always been all over the place,” she says. “My career path is very similar to the way my brain works – I move from place to place because I believe there’s something to learn in each one of those industries.”

She’s the first to acknowledge how it looks to outsiders – “many of my peers have laughed at me, and told me to settle down and just pick something” – but says she’s just staying true to herself.

“I am a strong believer that we can do anything we want, especially when we’re young,” she says. “I’ve always focused on trying new things based on the opportunity to learn.”

Connect with Ro Izzetpanah on LinkedIn.

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