Gisela Antakly Martinez
at Edelman Significa, Brazil
Gisela, a Brazilian communications professional with extensive experience in both the public and private sectors, wanted to find a new, career-accelerating role that played to her leadership, business development, stakeholder management, and analytical skills.
Gisela made a short list of target companies and went to communications conferences, to network with executives at those firms. At one such conference, Gisela heard a passionate speech about the rising importance of the Brazilian market from Ronald Mincheff, who was, at the time, President of the Brazil office of the global PR firm Edelman. “I really liked what the CEO said, and it was something I really believed in,” she said. Ronald mentioned that he was having a tough time finding strong professionals to be part of his Brazilian team, which encouraged Gisela to contact him and inquire about opportunities.
“I knew that if I emailed him, I wouldn’t be able to reach him. So I sent him an InMail with a very personal message, saying I appreciated everything he said, pointing out specific points in his speech,” Gisela said. “I was sure he would be the one who would open it. Nobody gives their LinkedIn password to assistants or anyone else.”
Within a week, Ronald replied, inviting Gisela in for an interview to discuss her background and career goals. Though Edelman’s open positions at the time were not a fit for Gisela’s background, the team was impressed with her and kept in touch. Over the next few months, Gisela interviewed with several other team members and waited for an appropriate job opening.
When local energy company AES Eletropaulo (subsidiary Brazilian company owned by AES Group) hired Edelman to manage their stakeholder relationship program, Edelman immediately approached Gisela to ask if she was interested in leading the project. Gisela’s experience communicating and strategizing with a variety of stakeholders made her a perfect fit for the role on the public affairs team. Gisela was hired and is now happily working as a Senior Account Manager at Edelman.
When asked what tips she would give fellow job seekers, Gisela particularly recommended the use of InMail “It allowed me to directly access the decision maker in a second. The position I’m in now didn’t even exist at the time. That’s why the approach was so important. My current position opened up later on and he [Ronald] immediately thought of me,” shared Gisela.
Gisela also recommends making a PDF document of LinkedIn recommendations and including it in one’s portfolio. “That really made me stand out. I showed it to interviewers and they loved it.” she shared.