Hannah Schneider, HSC

Sum up your current mood in a Beyonce lyric!

Who run the world, GIRLS?!

Take us behind the scenes, how is (your company) structured?

There is never a boring day! Hannah Schneider Creative is based in both Nashville and New York. We have an amazing team of publicists, social media managers and designers! While PR and Social Media departments are handled separately, a lot of the teams have crossover so we try to work as collaboratively as possible.

I oversee all strategy, so nothing comes out of our office that I have not seen, edited or put my mark on. We also handle all graphics and content in house, so while some days are spent writing, others are spent taking content photos for our social media clients. I think our staff works harder than anyone I know, but we have so much fun and it always keeps us on our toes!

What steps did you take to get here?

Although I took a less traditional route in terms of education, I have always known what I wanted to do! I quickly realized sitting in class wasn't for me, so instead of finishing college I dropped out, worked in restaurants all through my early 20's and did as many internships as possible! I have been blessed with several mentors with whom I credit much of my "success" and I encourage everyone to find someone they can learn and grow from!

What are three tips you’d give to your 20 year old self?

1. Keep up the HUSTLE! The juggling 2-3 jobs at one time are going to be worth it and you have a lot more to learn.
2. Do what makes you happy. If you are miserable going down the path your parents or grandparents say you need to take, take action and do something about it. Life is too short to be wasted doing things you don't love.

3. Try everything. Unlike most 20 year olds, I knew exactly what I wanted to do since I was 17 years old. However, I don' think that's the norm! Take as many different internships as you can, work in several different fields, go to every networking event - this will help pave a path you never even know imaginable!

A lot of career women struggle with finding balance. How do you manage your work/life balance?

Yikes! I have to say, I am not good at this one. I often work 14 hour days and skip meals. However, I try to carve out 3 days a week to exercise (which sometimes doesn't happen) and when I am with friends/family I try my best to turn off notifications so I can be present. I have to admit, it is HARD! PR and Social Media don't sleep, so in order for my company to be one of the best, I have to always be on. I also notice everything, so I am trying my best to not micromanage and let my team do their jobs! Setting up and hiring the right people have really helped with this.

PR is a field that can be stressful and full of rejection, how do you stay motivated?

Gratitude and perspective. I am so grateful for every opportunity that comes my way, and for every stressful night, or client rejection I try to learn from it to better myself as a leader and HSC as a company. I am a human being, in 2018 and am living in the most insane digital era where anything is a possible, and my voice has huge opportunity to be heard, how incredible is that?

No two days are alike! What do your days usually consist of?

You are correct! Although every day is completely different, one thing we do as a team is a "daily standup" meeting where the Nashville and NYC offices hop on a 15 minute call to go over their top goals and priorities of the day. Not only does this help teams be more collaborative, it also allows us to communicate struggles or needs as a team so we can help one another - we have found this to be extremely beneficial. After that, I am typically editing a lot of press releases and social media content, going over brand strategy for our clients with the PR teams or shooting content for the restaurants we work with. Education is super important me, so I also spend a lot of time reading trade blogs or publications and updating our HSC blog to make sure we are staying up to date with the constant changes in social media and PR.

What's the biggest challenge facing communicators right now?

Hannah Schneider Creative is a firm that caters to hospitality and travel clients, so I think for us it's that this specific field is extremely saturated. There are several restaurant openings a day, a new unicorn cupcake drink every week, so in order to for us and our clients to stand out, we have to get VERY creative, and more importantly be very strategic in every move.

How do you stay on top of industry trends?

This has always been one of my strongest assets, I notice trends early on and figure out how to adapt our practices as needed to make sure we're ahed of the curve. However, if this doesn't come natural to you, please READ!!! Now more than ever, information is at your finger tips. Pro tip, I am obsessed with Gary Vaynerchuk and listen to his podcast almost daily.

What has been the most meaningful moment in your career thus far?

This is so hard to pinpoint! I am eternally grateful for each and every client, mentor, friend and family member who has supported me along the way. Owning a business is extremely difficult, trust me there have been a lot of long nights, tears, mistakes and redundant conversations so THANK YOU to my amazing support system. However, I think the most meaningful moment thus far has been creating a company culture with my staff and being able to sit back and watch them interact and help one another. I have the most amazing team at HSC, they are hilarious, creative, brilliant and work their butts off, and I know without them I would not be here today fulfilling my dream!

Fatoumata Barry